Sudan reached a historic quarter final at the Africa Cup of Nations after a 2-1 win over Burkina Faso on Monday at the Estadio de Bata.
Striker Mudathir Eltaib was on target in the second half powering the Desert Hawks to the quarter finals for the first time since 1970.
The Sudanese went through after after Cote d’Ivoire beat Angola 2-0 in the other Group B clash in Malabo. It was a disappointing moment for the Angolans who needed just a draw to advance to the knockout stage.
Despite both Sudan and Angola finishing on four points each, the 1970 African champions had the edge on superior goals advantage.
Burkina Faso, the West Africans were very offensive throughout the game but failed to hit the back of the net as yet again they paid the price for their sluggishness at the rear.
It was the Stallions who unsettled their opponents with Jonathan Pitroipa and Moumouni Dagano leading the onslaughts from the onset with the Sudanese not given any breather but they managed to break the deadlock on 33 minutes against the run of play.
Eltaib, nicknamed after Brazilian star “Careca”, scored the opener after dispossessing Burkina Faso’s defender Gnanou Ibrahim at the edge of the penalty area before firing beyond the reach of goalkeeper Diakite Daouda.
Just before half-time, Burkina Faso were unlucky after Dagano’s glancing header from Narcisse Yameogo cross missed target narrowly.
The Stallions resumed the second half with the same power but lacked the cutting edge upfront. Burkina coach Paulo Duarte brought on youngster Bertrand Traore and the 16-year old showed glimpses of what he is made of by running down the Sudanese defence.
Mudathir scored a second goal for Sudan to calm nerves in the closing stages after pouncing on a moment’s hesitation from Diakite to round the Burkona keeper to score in the 80th minute.
Issiaka Ouedraogo scored for Burkina Faso in the seventh minute of stoppage time to close the gap, but Sudan held on to its crucial advantage to advance to the next stage of the tournament.
[Kofi Addae, GNA Special Correspondent in Bata, Equatorial Guinea]