Konate brace gives Senegal coach winning debut
Konate replaced recalled Demba Ba just past the hour mark and struck twice within 11 minutes as the Teranga Lions repeated a 2-1 win over the Black Stars at the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations.
Switzerland-based Konate brought his impressive club form to the Stade Oceane in the northern city of Le Havre having scored 11 goals in 17 appearances for Sion this season.
Senegalese success meant a winning debut for coach and former star Aliou Cisse, who was appointed when French coach Alain Giresse parted with the Lions after a Cup of Nations first-round exit.
The first Konate goal was memorable as he controlled a long clearance with his chest and volleyed the ball over goalkeeper Razak Braimah on 66 minutes.
Sadio Mane set up the second on 76 minutes with a pass across the goalmouth and Konate slipped to the ground as he struck the ball into the far corner.
Another substitute, Emmanuel Boakye, halved the deficit with a close-range headed goal off a cross six minutes from time to set up a tense climax.
Former Newcastle United and Chelsea striker Ba, who fell out of favour with Giresse amid disputes over his fitness, struck the post after only six minutes on his comeback.
Elsewhere, Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani converted an early second-half penalty to give Uruguay a 1-0 victory over Morocco in Atlantic city Agadir.
Democratic Republic of Congo, who exceeded expectations to finish third behind Ivory Coast and Ghana at the Cup of Nations last month, lost 2-1 to Iraq in the United Arab Emirates.
Paul Jose Mpoku, who plays his club football in Belgium like many Congolese, equalised from a penalty midway through the opening half.
A couple of UAE-based footballers, Ahmad Ibrahim Khalaf and Humam Tariq, scored for the Iraqis in Dubai.
Mauritius and Togo drew 1-1 in Bellevue with Andy Sophie putting the Indian Ocean islanders ahead during the first half and Jonathan Ayite levelling eight minutes from time.
The result left former France star and Togo coach Didier Six still seeking his first win in charge of the Mauritians after a midweek friendly against Burundi was also drawn.
Highlights of a six-friendly Sunday schedule are South Africa against Nigeria in Nelspruit and African champions Ivory Coast against Equatorial Guinea in Abidjan.
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