Mosta goalkeeper Christoffer Mafoumbi helped Congo deny giants Senegal as they gained a point in the 0-0 draw in their Africa Cup of Nations qualifications.
With Senegal already qualified to next January’s continental showpiece, Congo sit second on 8 points with one game left against Guinea-Bissau, who are two points behind them in Group I.
Both teams will meet next Tuesday, in Guinea-Bissau.
Mafoumbi, who has now collected 26 international caps for Congo, was making his sixth straight consecutive game for his national team.
Senegal, who have never lifted this trophy coming short twice including at the 2019 edition, lined up their stars from the start including Liverpool’s Sadio Mane and Keita Balde of Sampdoria.
Elsewhere, Dodo’s Cape Verde outclassed Cameroon 3-1 to make a bold step towards qualification. The Ħamrun Spartans player, who was called up for the first time with his national team, was not selected in the 23-man matchday list after the coach called 30 players for this double-header.
The Blue Sharks have lifted themselves into second place with seven points, two ahead of third-place Rwanda. Their final game of the group will be an away trip to bottom team Mozambique, next Tuesday.
Ibrahim Kone of Żejtun Corinthians (Guinea) and Yves Bitseki Moto of Mosta (Gabon) have already qualified to the final tournament, joined by former Malta coach Tom Saintfiet who is at the helm of The Gambia.