Riyad Mahrez struck a brace and provided an assist as reigning African champions Algeria beat Colombia 3-0 at Stade Pierre-Mauroy in an international friendly match in Lille, France on Tuesday.
After setting up Baghdad Bounedjah for Algeria’s opener 15 minutes into the match, the Manchester City forward opened his account five minutes later, before striking again 20 minutes into the second half.
Tuesday’s victory was a follow-up to the 1-1 draw with the Democratic Republic of the Congo in another international friendly match at home last Thursday.
The win by the African champions confirmed their pedigree as they upstaged a Colombia side featuring seasoned goalkeeper David Ospina, Juventus star Juan Cuadrado and Porto midfielder Andres Mateus Uribe.
The Desert Foxes showed intent from the start of the match and their efforts duly paid off when Mahrez linked up with Bounedjah, who ended his national team goal-drought after he went into this match boasting with just one goal in his seven last appearances for Algeria.
Algeria continued with their control of the game with Mahrez on target in the 20th minute off an assist from Inter Milan midfielder Ismael Bennacer.
After returning for the second half with a two-goal advantage, it was now Boundejah’s turn to provide for Mahrez, who made no mistake for Algeria’s third on 65 minutes to complete his double.
Having sealed the victory, Mahrez was then taken off for Nantes midfielder Mehdi Abeid five minutes before the full-time whistle.
Djamel Belmadi’s men will now shift focus to the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, where they will host Zambia on November 14, before visiting Botswana five days later.
They will also face Zimbabwe next year in their qualification campaign.
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