The visitors started on a bright note, resulting in two attempts at goal in the opening minute with striker Feysel Hashi leading the onslaughts.
However, the hosts broke the deadlock in the 26th minute when Ame Mohammed’s cross was headed home by Surafel Awel to give Ethiopia the lead. Awel soared above his marker to head over Somalia custodian Mustaf Hussein.
Mohammed should have doubled the lead in the 39th minute after beating his marker with some good piece of skill but shot off target.
Ethiopia dominated possession for after the recess but were wasteful in front of goal, while the Somalis grew in confidence.
The visitors silenced the home crowd in the 77th minute when Isse Ibrahim amazingly scored a header to restore parity.
However, their celebration was cut short three minutes later when defender Tesfaye Shibru headed home from point blank range to restore the lead.
Ethiopia takes a narrow lead into the second leg in a fortnight in Djibouti.
Girma Habteyohannis (Head Coach, Ethiopia)
We had a limited time to assemble this national side, even though we managed to play as a unit. We thought we would end the tie with a comfortable lead going to the second leg. Unfortunately, we conceded an away goal which will have a crucial effect on the return leg. We hope to work on our goal scoring proficiency. We will try to avoid any costly mistakes. If we continue with this momentum, I am pretty sure we will progress to the next round.
Mohammed Abdellah (Head Coach, Somalia)
We came here with an offensive strategy. It only worked partially but it didn’t completely work due to the climate. We were about to settle for a draw but unfortunately we lost 2-1. The return leg will be in a neutral ground so we hope to snatch a good result there.
Friday, 1 April 2016
Tunisia 3-0 Niger
Saturday, 2 April 2016
Sierra Leone 0-2 Gambia
Rwanda 1-1 Uganda
Mozambique 1-0 Mauritius
Swaziland 2-2 Namibia
Sunday, 3 April 2016
Liberia 0-2 Guinea
Algeria 2-1 Mauritania
Sudan 1-1 Kenya
Zimbabwe 0-1 Botswana
Ethiopia 2-1 Somalia