AFCON 2021: Man City and West Ham players to return as Algeria suffer elimination

Riyad Mahrez and Said Benrahma will return to their respective Premier League clubs after Algeria were dumped out of the Africa Cup of Nations.

Defending champions Algeria have been knocked out of the Africa Cup of Nations after losing 3-1 to Ivory Coast in their final group game.

The 2019 holders were completely outplayed in Douala and it ends a miserable tournament in which they failed to win a single game.

Algeria needed to win to progress from Group E but were rocked by a fine volley from Franck Kessie and a powerful header by Ibrahim Sangare in the first half.

Arsenal's Nicolas Pepe put the result beyond doubt with a fine individual goal nine minutes into the second half.

Manchester City's Riyad Mahrez missed the chance to pull one back when he hit the post from a penalty just before the hour.

Sofiane Bendebka did score - Algeria's first goal of the competition - with a header on 73 minutes, but it proved mere consolation.

Ivory Coast's victory ensured they would win the group and go through to a last-16 clash with Egypt.

Equatorial Guinea also went through as runners-up after beating Sierra Leone 1-0 in Limbe.

What does it mean for the Premier League?

Riyad Mahrez will return to Manchester City while David Moyes can expect the arrival of Said Benrahma.

It will be welcomed by both clubs who have both impressed this season. City currently sit top by 11 points in the league while West Ham are in fourth spot.

Mahrez is in competition alongside the likes of Jack Grealish, Phil Foden and Raheem Sterling for a starting place at Man City.

Whether he is in the squad for Man City's upcoming clash against Southampton is unknown but it is a huge boost ahead of a busy February period which includes a Champions League last-16 tie with Sporting Lisbon.

Meanwhile, Benrahma could be rushed back in time to face Manchester United this weekend, according to Hammers News.

Read more: January 2022 Premier League transfer window ins, outs and latest signings

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