Nigeria, Burkina Faso Reach Africa Cup of Nations Semifinals

Nigeria upset tournament favorite Ivory Coast 2-1 and Burkina Faso beat Togo 1-0 after extra time to advance to the Africa Cup of Nations soccer semifinals.

Sunday Mba got Nigeria’s winning goal yesterday with a deflected shot in Rustenburg, South Africa, after Ivory Coast midfielder Cheick Tiote had made it 1-1 following Emmanuel Emenike’s opener three minutes before halftime.

Jonathan Pitroipa headed in the only goal after 105 minutes in Nelspruit to lift Burkina Faso past Togo and into a semifinal against Ghana in two days. Nigeria will play Mali the same day for a place in the Feb. 10 final in Johannesburg.

Burkina Faso, ranked 92nd in the world by soccer’s governing body FIFA, only once previously reached the final four of Africa’s continental championship when it hosted the tournament in 1998.

To contact the reporter on this story: Peter-Joseph Hegarty in London at phegarty@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Elser at celser@bloomberg.net

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