Aristide Bance plays hero as Burkina Faso books AFCON semis spot

Aristide Bance.

Remember that name, because in Burkina Faso, it will not soon be forgotten.

The second-half substitute fired home an 81st-minute free-kick Saturday to send The Stallions to the Africa Cup of Nations semi-final for the second time in three attempts with a 2-0 victory over Tunisia in Libreville.

Watch: Burkina Faso’s Bance scores just minutes after taking pitch

Burkina Faso had never lost an AFCON quarter-final match, with progression each of the last two times (1998, 2013). Make that three for three after Bance’s opener came three minutes before Prejuce Nakoulma made a fool of Tunisia ‘keeper Aymen Mathlouthi in a 2-0 victory.

A chippy first half not short on tough tackles and disciplinary doubts led to a second stanza that opened up slightly courtesy of Burkina Faso’s front four.

The magnitude of the occasion had a discernible influence on both sides from the jump, as Saturday’s quarter-final featured cautious approaches with few shots on target and even fewer chances.

Even so, Paulo Duarte’s Burkina Faso was the better side, as a three-man attack of Abdou Razak Traore, Bertrand Traore, and Cyrille Bayala in support of Nakoulma appeared more threatening than their Eagles of Carthage counterparts.

Wahbi Khazri, arguably Tunisia’s most influential player in the group stage, was taken off in the 63rd minute, and with it, the North African nation’s impetus.

In the end, it was a deserved result for the 2013 finalist.

The Stallions will now await the victor of Sunday’s quarter-final clash between Egypt and Morocco to determine their opponent.

EPL | theScore

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