Algeria Top Group A

Algeria level with Argentina on 31 games without suffering a defeat, after their 4-0 victory away to Niger on day four of the second round of qualifying for the 2022 World Cup.

Early on in the day Burkina Faso’s victory against Djibouti pushed them up to first place in group A, so Algeria needed the win to be level on points.

Djamel Belmadi made two changes to the side that played four days ago in the home fixture against Niger with Sofiane Feghouli and Said Benrahma replaced by Algeria’s all-time top goal scorer Islam slimani and Youcef Belaili.

Following a slow start to the match, which saw one attempt from Niger hit the post, Manchester City winger Riyad Mahrez broke the deadlock in the 20th minute after a great passing play ended up with Baghdad Bounedjah squaring it for his captain to tap into an open goal.

Unusual scorer Aïssa Mandi then doubled the lead for the Desert Foxes just after half an hour of play and maintained it right up to half-time.

The visitors were quick to extend their lead even further after the break as Ismael Bennacer tapped in after Feghouli set him up inside the box.

The game was put to bed in the 54th minute when Belaili played a brilliant through ball to Mahrez who was able to return the favour for the first goal to Bounedjah, who finished first time past the Niger goal stopper.

Algeria will now have to wait for next month to determine if they will move onto the final stage of the qualification as they face Djibouti and Burkina Faso for a place in next year’s World Cup in Qatar.

Algeria XI: M’Bolhi, Atal (46′ Benayada), Fares, Mandi, Bedrane, Zerrouki (68’ Boudaoui), Bennacer (67’ Zorgane), Mahrez, Bounedjah (78’ Amoura), Slimani (46′ Feghouli)

Watch highlights of the match below:

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