Afcon wrap: Hosts Cameroon and Burkina Faso through to AFCON semi-finals

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  • Post published:January 30, 2022

Cameroon and Burkina Faso qualified for the semi-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations on Saturday with Karl Toko-Ekambi’s double leading the hosts to a 2-0 win over Gambia before the Stallions edged Tunisia 1-0 in the late game.

French-born Lyon striker Toko-Ekambi scored twice in the space of eight minutes at the start of the second half in Douala as Cameroon played their first game at the tournament since the deadly crush in Yaounde.

His goals led to ecstatic scenes of celebration and they were just reward for Cameroon, who completely dominated against a Gambian side appearing in their first Cup of Nations.

The opening goal arrived five minutes into the second half as right-back Collins Fai crossed and Toko-Ekambi headed into the far corner.

Out came the vuvuzelas, and the crowd were on their feet again on 57 minutes as the impressive Martin Hongla sent a low ball across goal for Toko-Ekambi to finish emphatically for his fifth goal at this AFCON.

Captain Vincent Aboubakar, with six, is the only player with more and together they have scored all of Cameroon’s goals.

Pending confirmation from the Confederation of African Football, Cameroon are now due to return to Olembe for their semi-final on Thursday.

In Garoua in the north of the country, Dango Ouattara scored the only goal of the game on the stroke of half-time as Burkina Faso edged Tunisia to set up a semi-final against either Senegal or Equatorial Guinea.

Ouattara, just 19, then turned villain eight minutes from time when a yellow card for elbowing Ali Maaloul was changed to a red after the referee from Botswana checked the touchline VAR monitor.

Success for Burkina Faso came just five days after the landlocked west African country was plunged into political uncertainty when President Roch Marc Christian Kabore was ousted in a military coup.

The remaining quarter-finals will both be played on Sunday at the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in Yaounde, with Senegal hoping to have Sadio Mane back after he suffered suspected concussion in their last-16 win over Cape Verde.