Niger might have put on a reasonable showing in Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, but they were clearly out-matched against co-hosts Gabon in their opening game of the actual tournament. The match was one-sided from the beginning, with Gabon getting chance after chance while Niger struggled to get the ball out of their own half. It didn't take long before pressure took its toll, with Pierre Aubameyang nodding in a superb cross from Stephane N'Guema on the half-hour mark to give the favourites a 1-0 lead.
More was to come, and it was again N'Guema and Aubameyang who provided the threat after the latter's header forced Kassaly Daouda into a fine save only for the lurking N'Guema to cash in on the rebound on the stroke of halftime. The rest of the game was seen out in comfortable fashion, and although Niger nearly notched their first-ever Cup of Nations goal as the game began to wind down Didier Ovono came up with a big save from Boubacar Issoufou's header to maintain the clean sheet and the two-goal lead that Gabon thoroughly deserved.