SAINTS winger Moussa Djenepo helped Mali get off to a winning start in their quest for Africa Cup of Nations glory.

The 20-year-old was named in the starting XI against Mauritania, which ended in a 4-1 victory for the Eagles.

Djenepo's international side broke the deadlock in the 38th minute when captain Abdoulay Diaby rifled his effort into the back of the net.

After taking the lead, the Saints winger then came close to doubling Mali's advantage, only for his shot to be saved by Brahim Souleimane in the Mauritania goal.

However, the Eagles were awarded a penalty just before half time, with Moussa Marega tucking it away.

Mali extended their dominance in the 55th minute, as Adama Traore's left-footed shot sailed past Souleimane.

Mauritania nicked a consolation goal late on with a penalty of their own which was struck in by El Id Hacen.

But with the clock ticking down, Mali restored their three-goal advantage when Metz's Adama Traore scored from outside the area.

Next up for Djenepo is a match against Tunisia on Friday, 28 June [3.30pm].

Saints teammate Sofiane Boufal is also playing in this summer's Africa Cup of Nations.

The Morrocan international played in their 1-0 win over Namibia and will feature again this Friday against Ivory Coast.