Ivory Coast 0-0 Burkina Faso: Elephants Share Goalless Draw With Stallions

The much-hyped Elephants of Ivory Coast failed to break down a spirited Burkina Faso side in a 0-0 draw, which leaves the group on a knife-edge.
Didier Drogba and company entered the stadium to great applause from the fans in the arena, but they were not able to deserve the acclaim after 90 minutes, as Burkina Faso stood fast and held them to a goalless stalemate.

The match began brightly for Ivory Coast, but great goalkeeping from Daouda Diakité kept the World Cup bound side at bay, and that would be the general theme of the match, as the ‘keeper would step up on a number of occasions to stop the likes of Bakary Kone, Didier Drogba and Saloman Kalou.

Drogba used his strength well up front, but he struggled to breakdown a stubborn defence, and when he was able to do so Diakité collected his shot.

Kone was another thorn in the side of the Stallions, with his pace and quick footwork turning into flashes of brilliance. But alas, his shots would go agonizingly wide of the target.

Burkina Faso threatened with World Cup qualifying round top scorer Moumouni Dagano, but he could not please his coach Paulo Duarte, though the final result will no doubt have put a smile on his face, as the Elephants were firm favourites to comfortably beat the minnows from Burkina Faso.

The game was aggressive at times, and despite two controversial incidents that may have been called a penalty by another referee, the official controlled the game relatively well and the sides played a respectful game.

After four minutes of injury time and no one bulging the back of the net, the game ended as hero of the game, goalkeeper Diakité put his body on the line one last time to stop the onrushing Drogba in a final attempt to put his name on the score sheet.

It seems that the underdogs are springing a few surprises so far in this competition, and this result now puts added pressure on the showdown between Ghana and Ivory Coast, considering the fact that Togo have pulled out of the competition.

Peter Pedroncelli, Goal.com