CAN 2024: Mali dismisses Burkina Faso and reaches the quarter-finals

Mali perfectly mastered its subject against Burkina Faso (2-1) in the round of 16, on January 30 at the Amadou Gon Coulibaly stadium in Korhogo. The Eagles join the quarters for the first time since 2013 and will face Ivory Coast for a place in the last four.

Malian Lassine Sinayoko celebrates his goal during the round of 16 between Mali and Burkina Faso in Korhogo, January 30, 2024. © AP / Themba Hadebe

By: Valentin Berg Follow


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At the end of a round of 16 which was one-sided for a long time, the Eagles of Mali ended up winning against Burkina Faso (2-1), who almost came back to the score at the very end of the match. The Malians largely dominated in midfield against the Burkinabè who waited too long.

Read alsoCalendar, results and rankings of CAN 2024 matches

Mali took the lead from the start in this derby: on a cross from Hamari Traoré, Amadou Haidara's header found Koffi's right post before returning to Tapsoba's feet. Surprised, the defender instinctively handed the ball to his goalkeeper without controlling his gesture and opened the score against his camp (1-0, 3rd). A delicate start for the Burkinabè, who would have to redouble their efforts to avoid seeing the match slip away quickly.

Especially since the Stallions' few attempts lacked the edge to seriously worry the Malian goalkeeper. Eric Chelle's men quickly found themselves in a new dangerous situation, thanks to a good breakthrough from Kamory Doumbia. The nugget of the Malian midfielder monopolized three players before serving Adama Noss Traoré, who unleashed a powerful strike at the entrance to the area without hitting target (15th). Traoré returned the favor a few minutes later by serving him in turn in front of goal, but Doumbia came up against Koffi (23rd) before offside was signaled.

The apathy of the Étalons grew more and more, except for their goalkeeper Hervé Koffi who kept his team in the game against numerous Malian attempts. Sinayoko threatened the cage twice (30th, 35th) without finding the net, just like Kamory Doumbia who grazed the left post on a cross shot (33rd). The knockout was not far away for the Burkinabè. Only Tapsoba, wanting to redeem himself, tried to sound the revolt by arriving launched into the Malian area on a high ball (39th). An insufficient effort, like Burkina Faso's first period, since his header went well above Diarra's goal.

Mali in control at the heart of the game

With more than twenty balls lost during the first act, the Stallions were clearly no match for the midfield. The Malians' recital continued as soon as they returned to the pitch, with Sinayoko doubling the lead by finally deceiving Koffi with a ball between the legs (2-0, 47th). The Burkinabè players, without a solution, already seemed to be on the ground.

Kouyaté's hand in the area came just in time to give them hope. Bertrand Traoré was able to reduce the gap on a penalty (56th) and revive his team in this round of 16, which had been one-sided until then. If the Eagles remained the most restless in front, the Stallions finally got their heads out of the water by not going far from the equalizing goal on a point-blank opportunity from Badolo, blocked at the last minute by Diarra (73rd).

With only a small goal in advance, Eric Chelle's men were not yet safe from seeing the match turn around. The Burkinabè pushed until the last minutes and Issoufou Dayo thought he could equalize by propelling the ball into the net just before added time (90th). But his joy was short-lived as the referee quickly canceled his goal for an obvious offside, at the same time sealing the victory for the Malians. With this qualification to the quarter-finals, where they will face Côte d'Ivoire, the Eagles are achieving their best run since their third place obtained during the 2013 CAN.


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