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Soccer News of Saturday, 3 January 2004

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Olympic Qualifier: Algeria 1 Ghana 0

Zambia beat South Africa
Algeria beat Ghana 1-0 in an Olympic qualifier on friday night in Blida. The only goal was scored in 19th-minute by France-based defender Antar Yahia.

The meteors were handled by Oti-Akenten and Kuuku Dadzie, since Zumdick did not travel with the team

LINE-UP George Owu, Emmanuel Osei, Saliu Muntari, Coleman, Inusah, Chibsah, Dong-Bortey E. Owusu-Ansah/Eric Gawu, Kojo Poku/Micheal Osei , Asamoah Gyan, Yahuza

Ghana are second, two points behind leaders Algeria who have 6 points. Zambia is third with four points and South Africa at the bottom with three points.

Zambia beat South Africa

Zambia beat South Africa’s u23 team, AmaGlug-glug, 1-0 in a Olympic qualifier at Potchefstroom on Saturday.

Zambia’s goal was scored by Collins Mbesuma in the 48th minute.

The first half was shadowed by Zambia in the possession stakes with both sides having good chances to score.

The best chance to score fell to South Africa in the 38th minute when keeper Kalililo Kakonje brought Gift Leremi down in the box. The penalty decision was a bit of a harsh one as it looked like the keeper was playing the ball.

Ryan Botha stepped up and put the spot kick over the crossbar.

Zambia took the lead in the 48th minute when Collins Mbesuma’s left footed shot went into the back of the net giving keeper Jacob Mokhasi no chance.

Both teams had more chances to score as the match went on with AmaGlug-glug having the better chances.

Zambia must be commended for the win as they came to South Africa wanting to play and really took the game to the hosts. After spending 23 hours on a bus to get to the venue from Zambia the team did not seem to be in any way affected by the long journey.

Zambia maintained ball possession throughout and the South African’s did not gel as a team on the day.

In the fourth series of qualifiers, Zambia host South Africa on February 21 and Ghana entertain surprise packets Algeria the following day.

Algerian footballer first to gain from FIFA rule change

French-born defender Antar Yahia has become the first footballer to profit from the change in FIFA's rules on international eligibility when he made his debut for Algeria in an Olympic Games qualifier.

Yahia, from the French first division club Bastia, scored the only goal of the 1-0 win over Ghana with a 19th minute header for the Algerian under-23 side in Blida on Friday.