Football

AFCON 2023: Angola through to last 16 after win over Burkina Faso

Angola officially checked themselves into the Round of 16 of the TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023 with a hard-fought 2-0 victory over Burkina Faso on Tuesday in a Group D match played at Yamoussoukro’s Charles Konan Banny Stadium. 

A goal in each half by Cristovao “Mabululu” Paciencia and Ambrosini “Zini” Salvador on the stroke of full-time saw the Antelopes qualify for the Round of 16 of the competition for the first time since 2010 as hosts. 

Both sides got into the clash with the aim of securing all three points to finish as group leaders and therefore enjoy a slightly longer rest period ahead of the round of 16. 

With both sides having a fair amount of chances at goal, it was Angola who capitalized in the 36th minute when the dangerous Mabululu headed home to give his side the lead. 

The goal gave Angola, who went into the game as group leaders the much-needed boost ahead of the recess. 

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Coming back from the break, the Stallions surged forward but could not break the stubborn Angolan defense. 

Victory was eventually sealed on the stroke of full time by Zini after a stinging shot that rebounded off the keeper found an alert Zini who slotted home to secure the victory.

Angola, Burkina Faso gain automatic entry into the next phase while Mauritania’s historic win over Algeria sees them record their first ever TotalEnergies CAF AFCON win that sends them into the knockout stage as one of the best third finishers of the groups.

This is what the coaches had to say:

Pedro Gonçalves – Angola coach

“We achieved a historic record, after we were able to win two consecutive matches. I am very happy for these young men. This victory is confirmation that we have passed the group stage. Now we will rest and then we will prepare for the next match. We were smart throughout the match, especially during the important moments. We faced Burkina Faso, which is considered an excellent team. I also dedicate this victory to all my family. I always work, even when I am with my family”

Hubert Velud – Burkina Faso Coach

“We played well in the first half, and we conceded a goal, then we were ineffective in our attack. We then conceded the second goal in the final minutes of the match which killed our morale. We were well focused before the match and motivated to win and take first place in our group. We cannot say that Angola was stronger than us. There was a lack of attacking effectiveness on the part of Burkina Faso in the match.

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We finished the first round in second place, in a difficult group, and even the Algerian team did not qualify. “What matters most to us is the 16-final match. There will be another type of match, different from the group stage matches”.



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