Niger triumphed 2-1 over Burkina Faso in a Last 16, 2017 Wafu Cup of Nations match at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium on Sunday.
The match started a little slowly with both sides squandering possession in the final third of the field.
The first real chance on goal came in the 17th minute when Niger’s Boubacar Hainikoye Soumana cut in from the left flank, beating one defender before firing just over the target from 20-yards out.
Boubacar Hainikoye Soumana was at it again eight minutes later when a powerful shot from the edge of the box deflected inches wide of the goal.
Burkina Faso came within inches of taking the lead on the half hour mark when Romeo Boni met a low left-wing cross from David Emmanuel Gora, but his eight-yard shot struck the crossbar.
The tournament saw its first goal from open play four minutes later when Boubacar Hainikoye Soumana showed great strength to fight off a defender and latch onto a through ball before duly lobbing the onrushing goalkeeper, 1-0.
Despite taking the lead, Niger suffered a bit of a set-back in the 40th minute when Hutmanu Ganiyu left the field injured and was replaced by Abdoul Moumouni Boubacar.
Back from recess, Burkina Faso came out firing from restart and made their pressure tell on the hour mark when substitute Hassamy Sansan Dah turned home a low right-wing cross from Adama Barro at close range, 1-1.
Niger, though, quickly hit back and took the lead for the second time in the 71st minute when Idrissa Halidou slipped in behind the Burkina Faso defence and slotted the ball between the legs of the advancing goalkeeper, 2-1.
Burkina Faso tried to find their way back into the game for a second time and threw numbers forward in attack, but they failed to break down the resolute Niger defence and exited the Wafu tournament.
Burkina Faso: 16. Ouedrago, 18. Bambara, 6. Couilbaly, 5. Beao, 3. Gora, 11. Barro, 4. To, 17. A. Traore (Zongo 88’), 10. Sylla, 7. Nana (9. Ahiro 66’), 14. Boni (13. Dah 50’).
Niger: 1. Dauda, 3. Lebne, 10. Halidou, 11. Victorien (8. Daouda 85’), 12. Dela, 13. Soumana, 14. Ganiyu (23. A. Boubacar 40’), 15. Abdoulaye, 17. Souley (19. Khaido 90’), 18. Dankwae, 20. Hainikoye.