The referee William Sikazwe, from Zambia, who was in charge of whistling the Tunisia-Mali of the Africa Cup held in Cameroon, whistled the end of the match when it was reached by minute 85. With the favorable result of 0-1 for the visitors Thanks to Ibrahima Koné’s penalty goal, the Tunisian players, coach Mondher Kebaier and his coaching staff decided to take the field to protest the referee for signaling the end of the match with five minutes remaining in regulation time.
Given the scandal caused, the referee decided to continue the match that ended before 90 minutes, this time at 89. A reason for anger, again, for the players of the Tunisian team who did not stop explaining to Sikazwe that he had made the mistake of whistling the end of the game earlier than stipulated. Despite the fact that the regulation time was never fulfilled, no minute was added to a duel that had five change windows in its second half, attention to an injured, a penalty and its subsequent VAR verification.
Other images have also been seen of the referee pointing to the fourth official in the 80th minute who added five more, so he could have been confused and think that 90 minutes would have already been completed.
Following these Tunisian protests, the referee team left the Limbe Omnisport Stadium grass with the help of security guards. It was then that the African Football Federation, led by Samuel Eto’o, forced the last minutes of the match to take place (three extra minutes). However, none of the Tunisian players showed up on the pitch as they refused in protest. Mali did. This is how the surreal final of the first match of group E of the Africa Cup was decreed, where the Malian team emerged victorious.