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Burkina Faso 1-3 Senegal – AFCON Player Ratings

CAIRO, EGYPT - JULY 14: Sadio Mané (left) and Cheikhou Kouyate of Senegal celebrate victory after winning the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Semi Final match between Senegal and Tunisia at 30th June Stadium on July 14, 2019 in Cairo, Egypt. (Photo by Visionhaus)

Senegal ended Burkina Faso’s fairytale run to reach the AFCON 2021 final. 

Senegal defeated Burkina Faso 3-1 in their Africa Cup of Nations semi-final tie on Wednesday. The Lions of Teranga reached the AFCON final for the second time in a row by displaying yet another dominant performance.

One step away from making history!

Senegal came into the match on the back of their 3-1 win over Equatorial Guinea in the quarter-finals. Similar to that game, the Lions quickly controlled the possession against Burkina Faso.

However, Burkina Faso clearly showed how they had earned their surprising qualification by displaying a solid defensive performance. It took the Lions 70 minutes to finally break the deadlock.

Following a half-cleared corner, Kalidou Koulibaly headed the ball toward Abdou Diallo on the edge of the six-yard box. The PSG defender kept his cool and nodded the ball home as soon as he received it.

Senegal used their newly-found momentum perfectly, doubling their lead only six minutes later. A spectacular run by Sadio Mane won the ball for Senegal near the byline. The Liverpool star then cut the ball back to Idrissa Gueye, who smashed it behind the keeper to make it 2-0.

After conceding the second goal, Burkina Faso increased the pressure on Senegal’s backline. The Stallions got back into the game when they scored their first goal in the 80th minute. 

However, their careless attacking provided too much space for Senegal’s deadly attackers behind their backline. Following a mix-up between two Burkina Faso midfielders, Ismaila Sarr sent a precise long ball for Mane. Having escaped the offside, Mane calmly converted the one-on-one to secure Senegal’s semi-final win.

The 3-1 victory sends Senegal to the AFCON final for the third time. The Lions are now only one victory away from winning the tournament for the first time in their history.

Aliou Cisse’s side will discover their final opponents tomorrow when Cameroon host Egypt in the second semi-final match.

Player Ratings

Burkina Faso: Koffi (6); Kaboré (6), Tapsoba (6), Dayo (5), Yago (6); B. Touré (7), Sangaré (6), Guira (5); Bandé (7), Traoré (6), Bayala (6).

Bench: A. Tapsopa (6), Ouattara (5), Sanogo (6), Ouédraogo (7).

Cameroon: E.Mendy (6); B. Sarr (6), Koulibaly (7), A. Diallo (7), Ciss (7); Mendy (6), Kouyaté (6), Gueye (7); Dieng (6), Diedhiou (6), Mané (9).

Bench: P. Sarr (6), Gueye (6), Cisse (5), I. Sarr (7).

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