FIFA World Cup Qualifiers: Ethiopia and Djibouti Share the Spoils

Ethiopia and Djibouti shared the spoils leaving as both sides still searching for their first win in the African qualifying for the FIFA World Cup 2026,

Djibouti played host to Ethiopia on Match Day four of Group A at Morocco’s Ben M’Hamed El Abdi Stadium on Sunday.

It was the hosts who scored the first goal of the match. Gebriel Dadzie punished the Walias for a defensive mix up to score the goal that put Djibouti in front on the half-hour mark.

The Walias responded a minute later through Meneylu Wondemu’s well-taken goal – the first Ethiopia scored in the qualifying so far.

Both teams created a few clear-cut chances afterwards but failed to capitalize on them.

The second half continued in a similar vein with the two coaches making several substitutions to inject fresh into their sides. As the match continued, however, the Walias created a host of chances but failed to convert them into goals.

The result does give Djibouti their first point of the group but leaves them bottom, while Ethiopia sit one place ahead of them with three points.

Starting Line Up

Ethiopia: Habtamu (GK), Fetudin Jemal, Yared Kassaye, Million Solomon, Birhanu Bekele, Gatoch Panom (Capt), Binyam Belay, Wogene Gezahegn (Biniam Ayten 81’), Kenean Markneh, Mesfin Tafesse (Subst Fuad Fereja 90′), Minyilu Wondimu (Binyam Fikru 67’)

Djibouti: Youssouf Said Muktar (GK), Moussa Araita, Ali Farada, Yabe Said, Ibrahim Mohamed, Dadzie Gabriel (Mokhtar M. Hassan 90’+5′), Ahmed Aden, (Ahmed Youssouf 71′), Abdillahi Abdi Mahad (Awaleh Gedo 71′), Abdi Osman Moustapha, Samuel Temidayo (Abdillahi Elmi 83’) and Doualeh Mahamoud (Ramadan Abdi 83’)

All Group A Matches End in Draw

The other two group A qualifying matches on Monday also ended in draws.

Burkina Faso held by Sierra Leone

Burkina Faso lost out on an opportunity to close the gap between themselves and table toppers, Egypt after disappointingly dropping points in a home match played in Bamako.

After taking a two-goal lead ahead of the break, two lapses of concentration cost the Stallions vital points at home as Sierra Leone came from behind to salvage a 2-2 draw.

Guinea-Bissau 1 – 1 Egypt

Egypt maintained their lead at the top of Group A following a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Guinea-Bissau away from home. 

The hosts took the lead in the 42nd minute when Mama Baldé broke the deadlock. It was however Egypt’s trusted man, Mohammed Salah who leveled matters in the 70th minute to ensure that his side remain in the driver’s seat in Group A.

Group A Standings

Egypt | 10 pts
Guinea-Bissau | 6 pts
Burkina Faso | 5 pts
Sierra Leone | 5 pt
Ethiopia | 3 pt
Djibouti | 1 pts

The nine group winners will qualify automatically for the FIFA World Cup 26™. The four best runners-up will then compete for one place at the FIFA Play-Off Tournament.

(Additional reporting CAF online)

Editors’ Note: the article update on Tuesday to include the results of the other two matches in the Group