Day 1 of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations is in the books, as the four teams in Group A started the tournament's action.
Host nation South Africa faced Cape Verde Islands in the first match, while Angola and Morocco battled later in Johannesburg.
Unfortunately, it was a disappointing opening day, as both matches ended in 0-0 draws. Nerves prevailed in each game, as players failed to convert a single chance in the rain-soaked contests. It was a frustrating day, but every side in the group has a point, and they will look to find the net when they play again on Wednesday.
|South Africa||0-0||Cape Verde||Group A||FNB Stadium|
|Angola||0-0||Morocco||Group A||FNB Stadium|
South Africa 0 - Cape Verde 0
Anxiety got the best of South Africa, as the host nation played skittish throughout the match. They were sloppy with their possession, failed to create chances, and were unable to convert when they did get a decent look.
It was a disappointing performance for Bafana Bafana, who have not won a Nations Cup game since 2004. They were unable to win a match in 2006 and 2008, and they failed to qualify in 2010 and 2012.
On the other side, this is an encouraging result for Cape Verde, which was making its Africa Cup of Nations debut.
The newcomers should be happy to earn a point against the host nation, but their first Nations Cup match could have been even better. The Blue Sharks created the best chance of the day, as Luis Platini found plenty of space in front of goal.
Unfortunately, he played his shot well wide, and Cape Verde didn't get another great chance on the day.
Angola 0 - Morocco 0
Angola and Morocco were more aggressive than South Africa and Cape Verde, as the two sides created solid chances throughout the match.
Angola almost struck first when Mingo Bale challenged Morocco keeper Nadir Lamyaghri in the third minute. Bale unleashed a low-flying rocket, but Lamyaghri made an excellent save to keep the scores level.
Angola also had a chance to win it late, as former Manchester United striker Manucho had the look of the night. He received a perfect cross in the final minutes, but his header drifted wide of the goal.
Morocco had a few opportunities to score as well, with Mounir El Hamdaoui, Oussama Assaidi and Younes Belhanda all getting quality chances. Unfortunately, none of the three were able to finish, and the game resulted in another scoreless draw.
Hopefully these sides will produce some goals when Group A play resumes on Wednesday.
Sunday's Day 2 action will feature the following matches. Every AFCON 2013 game can be seen at ESPN3.com
|Ghana||Congo DR||10:00 a.m.||Group B||Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium|
|Mali||Niger||1:00 p.m.||Group B||Nelson Madela Bay Stadium|