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Africa Cup of Nations

  • February 3, 2013
  • • 18:30
  • • Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
  • Referee: B. Diatta
  • • Attendance: 27000
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Burkina Faso - Togo Preview: The Hawks and Stallions hungry for Afcon semi-final spot

Burkina Faso - Togo Preview: The Hawks and Stallions hungry for Afcon semi-final spot

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In another west African derby at the quarter-final stage of the Afcon, the Hawks are determined to build on their recent feat while the Stallions hope to better their 1998 record

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

TOGO
 Morocco
Agassa
Bossou, Nibombe, Akakpo, Mamah
Djene, Amewou, Wome, Ayite
Adebayor, Gakpe

BURKINA FASO

 Morocco
Soulama
Kone, Koulibally, Pananteguirui, K Sanou
Kabore, D. Kone, Pitroipa,
Bance, Dagano


The Hawks of Togo will battle it out with the Stallions of Burkina Faso at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit as both countries eye a semi-final berth in the ongoing 29th edition of the Africa Cup of Nations in South Africa.

These two west African countries have laboured in the history of the tournament with Burkina Faso's best being their fourth-place finish on home soil in 1998, and they held the record for the country with the longest run in the tournament (17 games) without a win until they broke that jinx against Ethiopia with an emphatic 4-0 victory.

Togo on the other hand are in the quarter-final of the tournament for the first time in seven appearances and this crunch encounter promises fireworks.

This is the first time they are locking horns in the history of the tournament despite the fact that they were billed to face each other in Group B of the 2010 edition in Angola, but the Togolese withdrew after gunmen attacked their team bus in Cabinda, an incident which saw three of their staff losing their lives, while a number of players were injured.

As far as this tournament is concerned, both countries have served fans and spectators with delightful attacking football characterised by numerous quick counter-attacks, however, the side which will prove resolute at the back will likely produce the victory. Burkina Faso, who have conceded just one goal look very solid in defence with the likes of Olympique Lyonnais centre-back Bakary Kone, Saidou Panantedegurui, Paul Koulibally and Mohammed Koffi steering the ship at the back.

They are yet to face a team with a well drilled attacking force like Togo. The men between the sticks will be crucial in the game with Togo's shot-stopper Kossi Agassa, who is arguably the best in the tournament and his opposite number Soulama Abdoulaye, who was superb in the first game against Nigeria.

Serge Gakpe, Dove Wome and skipper Adebayor will be the key men to lead the Hawks to fly high while the presence of Jonathan Pitroipa, Charles Kabore and Djakaridja Kone will be crucial if the Stallions are to make it to the semis for the second time in their history.

  DID YOU KNOW?

  • Togo have not lost to Burkina Faso in their last four games dating back to 1999.

  • The all-time record between the two sides are as follows: played 19, Togo won nine, drew six, lost four.

  • Burkina Faso coach Paul Put was banned for three years in Belgium by the FA for his involvement in the Ye-Zheyun match fixing scandal.

  • The Burkina Faso nickname is Les Etalons, which means 'The Stallions', and this is in reference to the legendary horse of Princess Yennega.

  • Three of the Togolese national team are either from different countries or of mixed nationalities: Alexys Romao - Brazilian Togolese. Emmanuel Adebayor - Nigerian, Jonathan Ayite - Ghanaian Togolese).
  • The last time the countries met was in a friendly in 2012 where Togo won 3-0 at the Stade Municipal.

Players to watch

J. Pitroipa

Position: Attacker

Games: 6

  • 2
  • 2
  • 1
Jonathan Pitroipa is arguably one of the stars in this Afcon where he is one of the pieces in the Burkina Faso jig saw. The hugely tactical and highly talented winger has seen it all in the German Bundesliga with Hamburg and he is now one of the best players for his French club Rennes. If Pitroipa gets a good game, then the odds will surely favour the Stallions within regulation time.

E. Adebayor

Position: Attacker

Games: 4

  • 1
  • 2
  • 0
Emmanuel Adebayor who rescinded his retirement decision to play for the Hawks at this tournament is the engine of the team. The Tottenham Hotspur striker who is the country's all-time top scorer is the most experienced player in the Togolese set up and he will be key in deciding moments like this.

Editor's Prediction

This crunch game will witness a lot of physical attack. Both goalkeepers will have a lot to do which includes organising their backlines. A one all draw is the likely results after 120 minutes of football of which the game will be decided by the lottery of penalties.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Burkina Faso

Togo

Wins
2
1
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Burkina Faso BFA
Burkina Faso Burkina Faso
Draw
Togo TOG
Togo Togo
29%
63%

Top 3 Predictions

Burkina Faso BFA
1 - 2
Togo TOG
Burkina Faso BFA
2 - 1
Togo TOG
Burkina Faso BFA
1 - 0
Togo TOG

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