Friday January 23 2015

Algeria to progress, sure wins for Barca and Chelsea

Cameroon’s Henri Bedimo (R) challenges Mali’s Sambou Yatabare during t

Cameroon’s Henri Bedimo (R) challenges Mali’s Sambou Yatabare during the 2015 African Cup of Nations group D one-all draw on Tuesday. Cameroon face Guinea while Ivory Coast entertain Mali tomorrow with all teams in group D stuck on a point each. AFP PHOTO  

By Mark Ssali

AFCON

Friday
Ghana vs Algeria
Looking certain to take over from Egypt as the best team in Africa three or four years ago, Ghana have since stagnated, something very evident during the qualifiers in the same group as our own Uganda.
Now they take on what is currently the best team in Africa, needing a result to stay alive in this group of death. Algeria not likely to give them many openings though. ‘Away’ win

South Africa vs Senegal
South Africa were guilty of not converting their chances to kill off the game after they had taken the lead against Algeria in their opener.

It is the exact opposite of Senegal who, led by Biram Mame Diouf and Moussa Sow, are sharp in front of goal. The Bafana Bafana are looking good on the ball however, entertaining and creative too. It should count for something. Draw

Saturday
Ivory Coast vs Mali
There is little respect for reputations when West African nations clash, and so the Ivory Coast must expect their noses to be bloodied by Mali in this one.

However, with those very reputations on the line, Yaya Toure, Wilfried Bony and company should come alive after scraping up a draw in their opener, and with Seydou Doumbia starting there will be enough firepower to do the job. ‘Home’ win

Cameroon vs Guinea
For a Ugandan who watched Guinea from up close in the same qualifying group, it is not a surprise that they are holding their own in the tournament proper because they are a very good team. Cameroon have a new look about them, and are yet to replace the deposed old guard with regular goal scorers and big game match winners. It should be a good game with plenty of skill on show. Draw

Sunday
Congo vs Burkina Faso
Draw

Gabon vs Equatorial Guinea
Draw

Monday
Cape Verde vs Zambia
Draw

DR Congo vs Tunisia
‘Home’ win

Tuesday
Senegal vs Algeria
Draw

South Africa vs Ghana
‘Home’ win

Wednesday
Cameroon vs Ivory Coast
‘Away’ win

Guinea vs Mali
Draw

FA CUP

Chelsea vs Bradford
Home win

Man City vs Middlesbrough
Home win & Over

Cambridge vs Man United
Away win

Liverpool vs Bolton
Home win

LA LIGA

Cordoba vs Real Madrid
The European champions have found their feet again after a recent wobble, and that attack is back to its old ways. It might take a while in this game, but they will eventually find a way through. Away win

Elche vs Barca
Controversy and criticism a couple of weeks ago seem to have shaken Barcelona from their slumber, and Lionel Messi now has plenty of scores to settle. He has willing and able accomplices. Away win & Over

Atletico Madrid vs Vallecano
Someone has to pay for yet another disappointment at Barcelona’s Camp Nou, this time in the Copa Del Rey in midweek. The champions must bounce back. Home win

SERIE A

Lazio vs Milan
Milan were embarrassed at home to Atalanta last weekend, and they are away to a much better side. But they will improve. Draw

Inter vs Torino
Shaqiri, the new signing from Bayern, is already making Inter look better. They should launch an attack on the Champions League places. Home win

Juve vs Chievo
Home win

Fiorentina vs Roma
Draw

LIGUE ONE

Lyon vs Metz
Home win

Nice vs Marseille
Away win

Lille vs Monaco
Draw

St Etienne vs PSG
Away win

ssalimark@gmail.com, @markssali on twitter