Thu, Jan 31, 2013 - Page 20 News List

Moses leads Nigeria to knockout phase

MINNOWS’ MARCH:Lowly Burkina Faso surprised all by securing top place in Group C and dumping champions Zambia out of the tournament with their solid defense

Reuters, RUSTENBURG, South Africa

“We apologize for our behavior, but we love the game,” it said.

“They are the best fans in the world,” Bishaw added.

BURKINA FASO 0, ZAMBIA 0

Reuters, NELSPRUIT, South Africa

Burkina Faso struck a double blow at the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday by securing a surprise top place in Group C and eliminating holders Zambia from the competition after a goalless draw in Nelspruit.

A solid, defensive performance held at bay all that an increasingly desperate Zambia could throw at them and, combined with Nigeria’s win over Ethiopia in Rustenburg, means Zambia will play no further part in the tournament.

They are the first holders to be eliminated at the first stage since Algeria in 1992.

Burkina Faso, outsiders coming into the tournament, now play either Togo or Tunisia in the quarter-finals on Sunday, ensuring at least one outsider in next week’s semi-finals.

“We believed we could go further in this. It’s a night of history for Burkina Faso,” coach Paul Putt said.

It is the first time since 1998, and only the second time ever, that they have reached the last eight.

“We had double motivation being close to qualification and playing against the champions. I told the players this chance might never come again,” he added.

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