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World Cup Qualifying - Africa | Group Stage
Nov 20, 2023 at 7pm UK
Stade 26 Mars

1 - 1

Doumbia (76')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Kondogbia (79')
Pirioua (40'), Youfeigane (66')

Preview: Mali vs. Central African Republic - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Mali vs. Central African Republic - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Monday's World Cup Qualifying - Africa clash between Mali and Central African Republic, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Mali will be looking to pick up a fourth straight victory when they entertain the challenge of Central African Republic at Stade du 26 Mars on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the away side make the trip to Bamako aiming to get their World Cup qualifying campaign up and running off the back of an opening defeat last time out.

Match preview

Mali cruised to a comfortable 3-1 victory over Chad on Thursday evening to kick off their journey to the 2026 World Cup in grand style.

Eric Chelle's men opened the scoring on the stroke of half time through Kamory Doumbia but were soon pegged back by Marius, after which Youssoufou Niakate and Ibrahima Sissoko netted to decide the contest.

As a result, Les Aigles have now emerged victorious in each of their last three matches and five of their most recent six outings overall.

Awaiting them next is the challenge of an opposing outfit who are a whopping 80 places below in the latest FIFA rankings of national teams.

Currently on a run of four straight wins in front of their fans, Monday's visitors will head into the game on home turf with the wind in their sails.

Central African Republic came away empty-handed from a highly-entertaining clash against Comoros, which ended 4-2 at Stade de Moroni on Thursday.

After going ahead courtesy of an Akim Abdallah own goal, Raoul Savoy's men conceded four unanswered goals to Kassim M'Dahoma, Benjaloud Youssouf, Rafiki Said and Myziane Maolida before pulling one back through Younn Zahary.

That was a third defeat on the bounce across all competitions for the Wild Beasts, who were previously on a run of two consecutive victories.

Having been beaten in all but one of their last seven matches on the road leading up to Monday's clash, the visitors will be seeking to turn their away fortunes around.

Mali World Cup Qualifying - Africa form:

Mali form (all competitions):

Central African Republic World Cup Qualifying - Africa form:

Central African Republic form (all competitions):

Team News

Michael Yangao is a doubt for Central African Republic here after he was forced off with an injury scare just past the half-hour mark in the defeat to Comoros.

Should Yangao be deemed unfit to participate, 22-year-old Isaac Bomawoko is the favourite to earn a recall to the starting lineup for the hosts.

Ibrahima Sissoko and Youssoufou Niakate will both be pushing for a place in the Mali XI, having come off the bench to good effect last time out.

Kamory Doumbia has found the back of the net four times in his first five matches for the hosts, making the forward one to keep an eye on here.

Mali possible starting lineup:
Diawara; Traore, Kouyate, Niakate, Haidara; Dieng, Doucoure, Camara, Sinayoko; Doumbia, Diabate

Central African Republic possible starting lineup:
Youfeigane; Yapende, Ndobe, Guinari, Yangao; Baboula, Kondogbia, Youga, Majouga; Koyalipou, Mafouta

We say: Mali 2-1 Central African Republic

Mali's momentum heading into this one makes them favourites to come out on top, and coupled with the added advantage of playing on home turf, we are tipping them to carry the day come the sound of the full-time whistle.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

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