#AFCON2015: Dramatic penalty shootout sends social media into frenzy

    Story highlights

    • Ivory Coast beat Ghana in penalties to win the Africa Cup of Nations
    • This was the first AFCON title for the west African nation in 23 years
    • Check out the reaction on social media during and after the dramatic match

    (CNN)After 32 games, 23 days and one drawn lot, it's all over.

    A dramatic 9-8 penalty shootout alleviated a turgid scoreless draw, but after a 23-year wait Ivory Coast will not care how they secured the silverware.
      The unlikely hero of the evening was Boubacar Barry, Ivory Coast's hitherto reserve goalkeeper, only promoted to the team after an injury side-lined first choice Sylvain Gbohouo. After saving two penalties, he slotted the winning kick against his opposite number, sending the West African nation into raptures.
      It was a bizarre and beguiling night of football in Equatorial Guinea, but the festivities were not contained to the Estadio de Bata. Millions around the world, including players past and present, took to social media to share their despair and jubilation.
      Here, we have compiled the juiciest online outbursts as we reflect on this, the morning after the night before.
      The importance of the occasion could not be understated.
      But an utterly uncompelling 120 minutes of football gifted few highlights. Fans were impatient.
      As open play drew to a close the painful inevitability of penalties awaited.
      Ivory Coast's Gervinho, subbed in the dying moments of extra time and knowing he would play no further part, couldn't bring himself to watch the shootout.
      Sitting despondently in a plastic chair, the internet turned on the Ivorian striker and reacted in the only way it knows how: a meme.
      Both teams missed two penalties apiece, calling forth the dreaded sudden death. With the late drama, all was forgiven according to ESPN.
      Neutrals reveled in the late drama.
      With all outfield players having stepped up, it was down to the goalkeepers. Tom Gann was at hand to provide a Marxist reading of the situation.
      As Boubacar Barry broke the deadlock, Ivory Coast legend Didier Drogba reacted to the moment.
      With the help of The Simpson's Jasper Beardly, one parody account summed by the absurdity of the situation.
      Wyclef Jean of The Fugees was quick to offer both his congratulations and commiserations.
      Ghanaian recording artist M.anifest was despairing.
      The post-match analysis was swift and cutting, some suggesting the Ghanaians could have done with a little more training and a little less of this:
      The Black Cats' John Mensah was magnanimous in defeat...
      ...And the hero Boubacar Barry was humble in victory.
      There were consequences for ex-Ghana player Samuel Kuffour, who bet his team would win.
      Ivory Coast' Salomon Kalou pointed to the long path he and his captain Yaya Toure had taken to victory.
      And fans felt the same.
      But after 23 years of hurt, the journey was complete.