It does not have the same stake as the marvel marked at the end of additional time in the semi-final of the CAN 2019 against Nigeria but Riyad Mahrez again scored a superb free kick this Friday night in Blida during the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup. In a hitherto rather sluggish match between Algeria against Niger, the captain of the Fennecs broke the situation on one of the rare attempts by his team shortly before the half hour mark.

Full axis but close to 30m from the Nigerian cages, the protected Pep Guardiola from the Manchester City side illuminated the evening with a big strike sent into the skylight of Kassaly Daouda and allowed Algeria to return to the locker room with a meager lead.

Finally, the free kick scored by the Sarcelles kid could well prove to be more decisive than expected in view of the qualification for the 2022 World Cup. Held in chess by the Burkina Faso in September (1-1), the Algerians must fill up on points against the deemed weakest team in Group A during the qualifiers in the Africa zone.

A victory against Niger is therefore of capital importance to continue to believe in a qualification for the World Cup in Qatar. If they win this Friday, the Fennecs will be sure to keep first place in the standings, the only qualifier for the World Cup play-offs. With his superb free kick, Riyad Mahrez was a big thorn in the foot of his teammates.