Gelson Dala scored twice as Angola shrugged off the early dismissal of goalkeeper Neblu to beat 10-man Namibia and reach the quarter-finals of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

Neblu was shown a straight red in the 17th minute for handling Bethuel Muzeu’s shot outside his box, but Dala put Angola in front with a tap-in seven minutes before the break.

Namibia defender Lubeni Haukongo was soon sent off for a second bookable offence and two minutes later Dala doubled Angola’s lead by powerfully heading home Fredy’s free-kick.

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Mabululu’s neat finish following a swift counter-attack midway through the second half wrapped up victory and sent the Palancas Negras into the last eight for the first time since 2010.

Angola will face the winners of the last 16 tie between Nigeria and Cameroon later on Saturday (20:00 GMT) in the next round on Friday in Abidjan.

Neblu had been booked for handling a through ball outside his area in Angola’s group-stage win over Burkina Faso, but referee Dahane Beida had no choice but to send off the 30-year-old in Bouake.

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Kialonda Gaspar’s defensive mistake left Muzeu through on goal, and Neblu charged out to stop the forward’s attempted chip.

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Replacement keeper Antonio Dominique was called into action straight away to save Deon Hotto’s free-kick but Namibia were dealt a blow of their own just minutes later as Prins Tjiueza – one of their top performers in the tournament – was forced off injured

Angola seized control of the match and captain Fredy had a hand in all three goals, teeing up the opener after latching on to a clever through ball from Gilberto and squaring for Dala to tap in.

The Brave Warriors’ woes were compounded when Haukongo, booked early on for handball, got his second yellow card following a trip on Mabululu.

Fredy’s pin-point delivery allowed Dala to head home for his fourth goal of the tournament, with the skipper registering his third assist at the finals.