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Burkinabe march on at Adebayor’s expense

SHEYI-TOGOENELSPRUIT, South Africa, February 3 – Jonathan Pitroipa scored late in the first period of extra time to give Burkina Faso a 1-0 victory over Togo Sunday in the last Africa Cup of Nations quarter-final.

Captain Emmanuel Adebayor twice went close to putting Togo ahead in the second half of regular time before Pitroipa struck with a near-post header off a corner that went into the net via the underside of the crossbar.

The Stallions face four-time champions Ghana here on Wednesday while two-time title-holders Nigeria tackle Mali in the other semi-final in Durban.

Burkina Faso broke the deadlock through the lively Pitroipa on 105 minutes when he nodded a corner beyond surprised goalkeeper Kossi Agassa and into the net.

Pitroipa’s winner was just reward for Burkina Faso’s more offensive approach, especially in extra time after 90 drab minutes at Mbombela Stadium in this north-eastern city.

The Stallions, whose only other last-four appearance came 15 years ago when they staged the competition, seem to find extra strength as the game wore on while the Sparrow Hawks tired.

Togo enjoyed more possession, but could not translate it into goals.

The first half belonged to Togo, who created the better chances.

Burkina Faso took the game to their opponents and after just four minutes Kofi Mohamed attempted to surprise the Togo goalkeeper with a shot from distance, but Agassa collected easily.

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Floyd Ayite wasted a good chance for the Togolese when he scuffed his shot inside the box after good work by Serge Gakpe.

The Stallions had a chance in the 29th minute, but skipper Moumouni Dagano left Togo off the hook when he chose to control the ball inside the goal area and pass it back with the Togolese defence in disarray.

Just after the break, Tottenham Hotspur striker and Togo skipper Emmanuel Adebayor thought he had scored with a header, but the Senegalese referee correctly ruled that Mady Panandetiguiri cleared the ball before it crossed the line.

Adebayor evaded several opponents in the 78th minute, but his shot from inside the box was pushed away by Burkina Faso goalkeeper Daouda Diakite.

Burkina Faso responded four minutes later when substitute Prejuce Nakoulma went on a mazy dribble only to be foiled by the alert Agassa.

Afcon at a glance

Quarter-finals

Sunday

At Rustenburg

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Nigeria 2 (Emenike 43, Mba 78) Ivory Coast 1 (Tiote 50)

At Nelspruit

Burkina Faso 1 (Pitroipa 105) Togo 0 aet

Saturday

At Port Elizabeth

Ghana 2 (Wakaso 54-pen, 90+5) Cape Verde 0

At Durban

South Africa 1 (Rantie 31) Mali 1 (Keita 58) aet

Mali win 3-1 on penalties

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Semi-finals

Wednesday

At Durban

Mali v Nigeria 1500

At Nelspruit

Burkina Faso v Ghana 1830

Third place play-off

Feb 9

At Port Elizabeth

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Semi-finals losers 1800

Final

Feb 10

At Soweto

Semi-finals winners 1830

Group A

Jan 19

At Soweto

South Africa 0 Cape Verde 0

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Angola 0 Morocco 0

Jan 23

At Durban

South Africa 2 (Sangweni 30, Majoro 62) Angola 0

Cape Verde 1 (Platini 35) Morocco 1 (El Arabi 78)

Jan 27

At Durban

South Africa 2 (Mahlangu 71, Sangweni 86) Morocco 2 (El Adoua 10, Hafidi 82)

At Port Elizabeth

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Cape Verde 2 (F. Varela 81, Heldon 90+1) Angola 1 (Nando 33-og)

Final standings (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points)

South Africa 3 1 2 0 4 2 5 – qualify

Cape Verde 3 1 2 0 3 2 5 – qualify

Morocco 3 0 3 0 3 3 3

Angola 3 0 1 2 1 4 1

Group B

Jan 20

At Port Elizabeth

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DR Congo 2 (Mputu 53, Mbokani 69-pen) Ghana 2 (Badu 40, Asamoah 49)

Mali 1 (Keita 84) Niger 0

Jan 24

At Port Elizabeth

Ghana 1 (Wakaso 38-pen) Mali 0

DR Congo 0 Niger 0

Jan 28

At Port Elizabeth

Ghana 3 (Gyan 6, Atsu 23, Boye 49) Niger 0

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At Durban

DR Congo 1 (Mbokani 3-pen) Mali 1 (Samassa 14)

Final standings

Ghana 3 2 1 0 6 2 7 – qualify

Mali 3 1 1 1 2 2 4 – qualify

DR Congo 3 0 3 0 3 3 3

Niger 3 0 1 2 0 4 1

Group C

Jan 21

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At Nelspruit

Zambia 1 (Mbesuma 45+3) Ethiopia 1 (Girma 65)

Nigeria 1 (Emenike 23) Burkina Faso 1 (Traore 90+4)

Jan 25

At Nelspruit

Nigeria 1 (Emenike 57) Zambia 1 (Mweene 85-pen)

Burkina Faso 4 (Traore 34, 74, D. Kone 79, Pitroipa 90+5) Ethiopia 0

Jan 29

At Nelspruit

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Burkina Faso 0 Zambia 0

At Rustenburg

Nigeria 2 (Moses 79-pen, 90-pen) Ethiopia 0

Final standings

B. Faso 3 1 2 0 5 1 5 – qualify

Nigeria 3 1 2 0 4 2 5 – qualify

Zambia 3 0 3 0 2 2 3

Ethiopia 3 0 1 2 1 7 1

Group D

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Jan 22

At Rustenburg

Ivory Coast 2 (Y. Toure 8, Gervinho 88) Togo 1 (J. Ayite 45+2)

Tunisia 1 (Msakni 90) Algeria 0

Jan 26

At Rustenburg

Ivory Coast 3 (Gervinho 21, Y. Toure 87, Ya Konan 90) Tunisia 0

Togo 2 (Adebayor 32, Wome 90+3) Algeria 0

Jan 30

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At Rustenburg

Algeria 2 (Feghouli 64-pen, Soudani 70) Ivory Coast 2 (Drogba 77, Bony 80)

At Nelspruit

Togo 1 (Gakpe 13) Tunisia 1 (Mouelhi 30-pen)

Final standings

I. Coast 3 2 1 0 7 3 7 – qualify

Togo 3 1 1 1 4 3 4 – qualify

Tunisia 3 1 1 1 2 4 4

Algeria 3 0 1 2 2 5 1

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Leading scorers

3: Emenike (NGR), Traore (BUR), Wakaso (GHA)

2: Gervinho, Y. Toure (both CIV), Keita (MLI), Mbokani (COD), Moses (NGR), Sangweni (RSA)

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