2019 Africa Cup of Nations, Group Stage
  • Baghdad Bounedjah (34' PEN)
  • Riyad Mahrez (43')

City's Mahrez helps Algeria to Afcon win vs. Kenya

JAVIER SORIANO/AFP/Getty Images

Riyad Mahrez led Algeria to a comfortable 2-0 victory over Kenya as they opened their Africa Cup of Nations finals campaign with a competent display in their Group C match on Sunday.

Captain Mahrez netted the second goal just before half-time after striker Baghdad Bounedjah had opened the scoring with a 34th minute penalty.

Midfielder Dennis Odhiambo gave away the spot kick with an errant tackle on Youcef Atal, who made a run down the right wing before cutting inside and forcing the Kenyan into a clumsy attempt to stop him.

Mahrez netted the second nine minutes later as he ghosted unmarked into the penalty area to lash in a pass pulled back from the byline that took a deflection off Kenya full-back Aboud Omar as it flew into the net.

It was as much as Algeria deserved with an overwhelming showing against the Kenyans, who looked largely outclassed on their return to the finals for the first time in 15 years.

Algeria's strong pressing forced Kenya to constantly turn over possession and never gave them an opportunity to create any chances.

Kenya's only promising attack came with just six minutes left when Ayub Timbe's run down the right wing set up a chance for Michael Olunga but he was thwarted by the Algerian defence.

Algeria and Senegal meet next in Cairo on Thursday.