On Tuesday, the Round of 16 continued in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations and the 2023 Asian Cup. Here's a look at the various players from Ligue 1 who took to the field, eager to contribute to their national teams' quests for a spot in the quarterfinals.
Uzbekistan 2-1 Thailand
Beginning with the Asian Cup, RC Lens defender Abdukodir Khusanov put in a 90-minute effort, proving to be a crucial defensive asset for the White Wolves. Uzbekistan opened the scoring in the 37th minute and sealed the deal with another goal in the 65th minute to advance past Thailand.
South Korea 1(4)-1(2) Saudi Arabia
Kang-in Lee from Paris Saint-Germain played the full 90 minutes, plus extra time, in the match between Saudi Arabia and South Korea, which ultimately required a penalty shootout to decide the winner. The Green Falcons took the lead early in the second half, but the Tigers of Asia managed to level the score to 1-1 during stoppage time. Despite extra time, the game couldn't produce a decisive result, leading to a penalty shootout where South Korea emerged victorious with a 4-2 win.
Mali 2-1 Burkina Faso
In the AFCON, Mali's starting 11 included Boubakar Kouyaté and Falaye Sacko from Montpellier HSC, Mohamed Camara from AS Monaco, and Kamory Doumbia from Stade de Brestois. The Eagles scored the first two goals, and although Burkina Faso responded with one of their own, they couldn't find the equalizer.
South Africa 2-0 Morocco
Morocco boasted key players like Azzedine Ounahi from Olympique de Marseille and Achraf Hakimi from PSG in their starting lineup for the contest against South Africa, with Amine Harit from OM joining the action off the bench for 30 minutes.
Despite their talented roster, the Atlas Lions failed to replicate their success from the 2022 FIFA World Cup, falling 2-0 to South Africa. Bafana Bafana secured an early goal in the second half, and although Hakimi had a chance to equalize with a penalty kick, he missed. South Africa capitalized on this opportunity, sealing their victory with an insurance goal in stoppage time.