Slimani: Keep Algeria's dream going
Algeria will face Germany on Monday in Porto Alegre and, speaking ahead of that match, striker Islam Slimani challenged his teammates to channel the spirit of the Algerian team of 1982, who stunned West Germany 2-1 at the World Cup in Spain, and qualify for the quarter-finals.
Slimani headed Yacine Brahimi's corner past Russia goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev on the hour mark of Algeria's final group match to secure a 1-1 draw, which took the North Africans into the knockout stages.
That was Algeria's initial goal when they arrived in Brazil but Slimani is not interested in going home now.
"We know all about the win over Germany in 1982, when we had the likes of (Rabah) Madjer, (Salah) Assad and (Lakhdar) Belloumi. We'd love to follow in their footsteps," the Sporting Lisbon forward said.
"If it was possible back then, why shouldn't we dream of doing it again?
"We came to Brazil aiming to get through the group phase. Now that we've done it we can be proud, but we shouldn't be happy to stop here. You always want more and we're hoping to keep this dream going. I don't want anybody to wake me up yet."
Germany got through Group G undefeated, knocking off Portugal and the United States, while drawing with Ghana.
Algeria found it a bit more difficult in Group H, losing to Belgium, before bouncing back with a victory over South Korea, which meant a draw against Russia would be enough to advance.
Slimani did not deny his team will find it tough against Joachim Low's Germany.
"The Germans are playing very well and everyone knows what they're capable of," the 26-year-old said.
"We’re clearly the underdogs but we're confident we can put in a great performance. We'll have to be more focused than ever before and play our very best football."