Benin through as Congo climb
© AFP

Thanks to a 3-2 victory at home to Angola today, Benin will join Nigeria and Cameroon in the final phase of African Zone qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. It was a result that also left their opponents in need of a supreme effort to advance as one of the best second-placed sides.

For their part, Côte d'Ivoire and Egypt are now practically guaranteed a berth in the next stage. FIFA.com looks back at the highlights from the race to advance in Africa this weekend.

Game of the day
Benin 3-2 Angola
Goals: Khaled Adenon 2, Razak Omotoyossi 52 and 66 (Benin); Flavio 12, Loco 78 (Angola)

Despite taking their place at Germany 2006 and generally impressing during their stay, the Palancas Negras are in grave danger of failing to reach the third phase of regional qualifiers for South Africa 2010. That they find themselves in such an uncomfortable predicament owes everything to an excellent Benin team, who carved out this victory to cement top spot in Group 3. The Squirrels were made to suffer in the last ten minutes but they were once again grateful to Omotoyossi for making the difference, with the two-goal hero taking his tally so far to five. The outcome leaves Angola sweating over their future ahead of their match at home to Niger next month. Luis Oliveira Goncalves's men must win that game and hope results elsewhere go their way as they target a spot as one of the best second-placed teams.

The upset
Mozambique 1-1 Côte d'Ivoire
Goals: Miro Lobo 52 (Mozambique); Bakary Kone 48 (Côte d'Ivoire)

As they took to the field at the Machava stadium in Maputo on Sunday, the Elephants no doubt had visions of themselves joining Nigeria and Cameroon in the third phase. Celebrations were put on hold 90 minutes later, however, as Vahid Halilhodzic's strong line-up left the Mozambican capital with heavy hearts. Didier Drogba missed the trip through injury, but new Marseille signing Bakary Kone continued his fine club form by opening the scoring a little after the break. Their lead did not last long and the Ivorians failed to find another way past Mambas goalkeeper Joao Rafael Kapango, but they will not be tempted to panic just yet. A draw against Madagascar a month from now would be enough to seal Côte d'Ivoire's progression from Group 7.

The player
Wilfrid Endzanga (CGO)

Going into their game against Mali at the Stade Alphonse Massamba-Debat in Brazzaville, Congo knew only a win would be sufficient to keep their dreams alive. Urged on by 50,000 fans, the Red Devils tried everything they could before Endzanga finally delivered the crucial blow three minutes from time. A striker with Algerian club USM Blida, his goal took Congo level with the Malians at the Group 10 summit.

The stat
36 - The number of goals already scored by Egypt, Congo DR, Malawi and Djibouti after ten games in Group 12. It has been, by some distance, the most prolific pool in the second phase.

All the results
Madagascar 1-0 Botswana
Zimbabwe 0-0 Guinea
Lesotho 0-3 Gabon
Mozambique 1-1 Côte d'Ivoire
Congo 1-0 Mali
Congo DR 0-1 Egypt
Benin 3-2 Angola
Niger 3-1 Uganda

The match between Ethiopia and Morocco has been postponed. Click on the links to the right to find detailed statistics on the African Zone and summaries of all Sunday's games.