Saturday, March 23, 2013

Congo 1 - Gabon 0; Burkina Faso 4 - Niger 0

Pointe Noire and surprising Congo played host to Gabon as Congo tried to extend their lead in Group E.  In a low-scoring group, this match played to form.  The first half ended 0-0.

In the second period, Congo broke the deadlock through a goal from defender Christopher Samba that was scored from fourteen yards to the far post.  Congo held on for the remainder of the match, and they win 1-0 to take a six-point lead at the halfway point of Group E play.

2013 African Cup of Nations runners-up Burkina Faso played their first match since that tournament at home to Niger in Ouagadougou.  Burkina Faso were stuck at the bottom of the group table in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, however, and they needed this win badly.  Jonathan Pitroipa (pictured, white) put the home side on their way with a score in the third minute.  The Burkinabe controlled the ball and the match, and the lead was doubled from a shot outside the box by Aristide Bance.  Burkina Faso led 2-0 at the break.

In the second period, it was more of the same.  With a dozen minutes to go, Charles Kabore made it three with a curling shot.  Burkina Faso slowed the game down from there on out, but they still managed a fourth goal through Prejuce Nekoulma with two minutes to go.  Burkina Faso win 4-0.

Congo 9 pts +5
Burkina 3 pts 0
Niger 3 pts -2
Gabon 3 pts -3

Christopher Samba 67

Burkina Faso
Jonathan Pitroipa 3
Aristide Bance 36
Charles Kabore 78
Prejuce Nakoulma 88

Match Reports:

Highlights: (Congo v. Gabon) (Burkina Faso v. Niger)

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