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The Algerian national football team’s first Africa Cup of Nations victory for 27 years fed a renewed sense of national pride, which has soared since 22 February following anti-government protests that led to president Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s resignation and have maintained pressure on a weak government manipulated by ambitious military strongman Lieutenant General Ahmed Gaïd Salah. At the Cairo final, the interim president, Abdelkader Bensalah, represented a nation that does not want him to continue in office.