Sports Features of Sunday, 3 February 2013
Team Profile: Burkina Faso
- Nickname: Les Etalons (The Stallions)
- Founded: 1960
- Joined FIFA:1964
- Coach: Paul Put
- Best Performance Fourth Place - 1998
- Champions None
- Runners-Up None
- Third Place None
- Fourth Place 1998
The Burkina Faso national football team, nicknamed Les Etalons (The Stallions), will be making their ninth appearance at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, having qualified as Upper Volta prior to 1984.
Their best finish was back in 1998 where they ended in fourth place during the tournament which they hosted; however, their recent performances have seen them failing to get past the group stage in five consecutive attempts between 2000 and 2012.
THE COACH | PAUL PUT
As a result Belgian coach Paul Put was given the reins in March 2012, taking over from Paulo Duarte, as they look to improve their record in the competition.
The 56-year-old started his coaching career with Belgian sides Geel, Lokeren and Lierse, before he was banned for three years by the Royal Belgian Football Association for his alleged involvement in a match-fixing scandal. From there he coached the Gambia national team between 2007 and 2011, before he was appointed to lead the Stallions.
The Burkinabe will be counting on star striker Moumouni Dagano, who currently plays for Al-Sailiya Sport Club in Qatar, and is the country’s top goal scorer of all time.
They also have a number of top players who ply their trade in the Ligue 1 in France like FC Lorient forward Alain Traore, Stade Rennais midfielder Jonathan Pitroipa, as well as Lyon defender Bakary Kone, who will all be expected to bring their international experience to help the side reach the knockout stages in South Africa.
HOW THEY QUALIFIED
Burkina Faso narrowly edged Central African Republic (C.A.R) on a 3-2 aggregate to book their place at the 2013 Afcon after a nervous return leg in Ouagadougou, where the Stallions toiled until the final minute before scoring the winner. The Burkinabe were exempted from the first round following their participation at the 2012 Afcon. They lost the first leg of the second round by a lone goal in Bangui and came from behind to win the return fixture 3-1 after conceding an early 7th minute goal through David Manga of Serbian club FK Partizan.
23-man Burkina Faso Africa Cup of Nations Squad:
Goalkeepers: Daouda Diakite (KV Turnhout, Belgium), Moussa Germain Sanou (St Etienne, France), Adama Sawadogo (Missile, Gabon)
Defenders: Ibrahim Gnanou (Alania Vladikavkaz, Russia), Bakary Kone (Olympique Lyon, France), Paul Koulibaly (Charleroi, Belgium), Saidou Mady Panandetiguiri (Valletta, Malta), Mamadou Tall (Persepolis, Iran)
Midfielders: Wilfried Balima (Sheriff Tiraspol, Moldova), Charles Kabore (Olympique Marseille, France), Mahamadou Kere (Konyaspor, Turkey), Mohamed Koffi (Petrojet, Egypt), Djakaridja Kone (Dynamo Bucharest, Romania), Jonathan Pitroipa (Stades Rennes, France), Florent Rouamba (Sheriff Tiraspol. Moldova), Bertrand Traore (unkown)
Forwards: Aristide Bance (Samsunspor, Turkey), Moumouni Dagano (Al Khor, Qatar), Prejuce Nakoulma (Gornik Zabrze, Poland), Issiaka Ouedraogo (FC Admira Wacker Modling, Austria), Abdou Razak Traore (Lechia Gdansk, Poland), Alain Traore (AJ Auxerre, France), Narcisse Yameogo (AD Camacha, Portugal).