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AFCON Preview: Angola, Burkina Faso Battle It Out In Today’s Fixture



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Angola and Burkina Faso will conclude their group-stage fixtures of the African Cup of Nations with a match at the Charles Konan Banny Stadium on Tuesday.

Both teams who have secured a place in the knockout stage of the tournament will try to finish the group stage as winners to potentially slug it out with an easier opponent in the round of 16.

Following a draw against Algeria in the opener, Angola gained confidence for the second round, where they faced group underdogs Mauritania.

The victory against Mauritania wasn’t easy, but doubles from Jelson Dala and a goal from Gilberto earned Goncalves’ team three points, despite conceding two goals.

As a result, Angola claimed their first victory since July 2023, allowing them to feel confident heading into the final round in Group D.

Even in the event of a loss to Burkina Faso, the ‘Black Antelopes’ will have a good chance of advancing to the knockout stage, if not in second place, then in third.

However, Angola will be desperate to stay in the tournament longer, as they have not progressed from the group stage since hosting CAN in 2010. Since then, they have failed to qualify for the tournament three times and have been eliminated in the group stage three times.

Heading into the match against Burkina Faso in Yamoussoukro, Angola currently leads the group due to a greater number of goals scored.

Previous matches against this opponent also show that there is no clear favourite in this encounter – six matches have resulted in two wins for each team and two draws.

Despite a long winless streak leading up to the Mauritania match, Angola had not suffered a defeat in their previous eight games, making it quite realistic to achieve a satisfactory result in the final round.

On the other hand, Burkina Faso has followed a similar path to Angola in this tournament. The ‘Stallions’ have secured a victory and a draw in their first two matches. Their victory came in the opening match against Mauritania, thanks to a last-minute penalty from Bertrand Traore.

In their match against Algeria, Burkina Faso scored twice and Traore had the opportunity to be the match-winner again, but the opponents equalized twice, forcing a 2-2 draw in stoppage time.

As a result, to win Group D, Herve’s team has no choice but to win in the final round, as they trail Angola based on additional tiebreakers. On the other hand, even a draw guarantees them a place in the AFCON knockout stage.

This is a good sign for the ‘Stallions’, as in their last two appearances, when they reached the elimination matches, they finished third and fourth in 2017 and 2021, respectively.

Burkina Faso has lost only one of their last eight matches, and that was a friendly against Iran in preparation for the African Cup. Unlike Angola, Herve’s team has more victories – half of their last eight matches in all competitions have ended in favour of the ‘Stallions’.

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