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Reaching AFCON final is unbelievable – Mahrez looking forward to finale after scoring late winner

The match-winner was thrilled by Algeria’s progress to the tournament decider following a dramatic semi-final

Riyad Mahrez described Algeria reaching the Africa Cup of Nations final as “unbelievable” after setting up a showdown with Senegal thanks to his stunning last-gasp free-kick.

Mahrez was the hero in Cairo, where the Manchester City star curled a 95th-minute set-piece past Nigeria goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi to seal a dramatic 2-1 victory on Sunday.

Algeria had initially led through William Troost-Ekong’s own goal before Nigeria equalised via an Odion Ighalo penalty with 18 minutes remaining following a VAR review.

But it was Mahrez who played hero, firing a stunning free-kick to send his country to the finale while scoring his third goal of the tournament.

Mahrez and Algeria will now contest their first AFCON final since winning the tournament on home soil in 1990 when they face Senegal on Friday.View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

Riyad Mahrez@Mahrez22


mais attendez ca fait 3 secondes que jai marqué raïs il est deja là sur la photo expliquez moi svp #raismbolide #123VivaLAlgerie45.2K11:54 PM – Jul 14, 201917.4K people are talking about thisTwitter Ads info and privacy

After his man-of-the-match performance, Mahrez said: “It was a very tough game today against a strong team.

“We were one goal up and were in control before VAR’s decision – they scored the penalty and in the last minute we converted our free-kick.

“We are very happy because to be in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations is something unbelievable.

“I think we have been very good in this tournament. We scored 12 goals and conceded two, that is the source of our confidence.

“We are looking forward to the final against Senegal. We played them in the group stage and we are expecting another tough game.”

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