Africa Cup of Nations 2013: Day 3 Scores and Results Summary
The first day at the African Cup of Nations was a bore, as neither game featured a single goal. The second day was much more fun, with five goals in total.
So what would day three hold for fans?
In the first match, last year's tournament winners Zambia faced Ethiopia, which is in the tournament for the first time in 31 years. Meanwhile, Nigeria took on Burkina Faso, a compelling match that came down to the wire and left Nigerian fans surely lamenting the team's ability to close strong.
Let's take a look back at Monday's Group C matches.
Zambia and Ethiopia Draw, 1-1
Ethiopia was in the Afcon for the first time in 31 years. Zambia won last year's tournament. So as you might guess, Zambia came into this contest as slight favorites.
But Ethiopia wasn't bothered by the odds. Adane Girma would tie this game in the 65th minute at a goal apiece, and that's how this wild and crazy contest would end.
This game had a little bit of everything, especially in the first half. Zambia pressed high up the pitch and put pressure on the Ethiopian back four, who looked shaky early on. Ethiopia's Saladin Seid just missed putting home a lob over the keeper then missed a penalty kick.
And then there was Ethiopian keeper Jemal Tassew, who was given a red card while he was being taken off the field on a stretcher after he collided with Chisamba Lungu nearly 40 yards from goal, as Lungu was free behind the defense.
Then in first-half stoppage time, Zambia's Collins Mbesuma would finally give the favorites the lead. Zambia would go into the second half up a goal and a man. It was a first half that had everything—a fast pace, questionable defending and plenty of cards to go around.
Girma's goal in the 65th minute would even the score, if not the playing field. But that would be the last of the goal-scoring. Give Ethiopia a lot of credit here—they generally looked the better side, and overcame playing a man down and a lot history to earn the draw.
Nigeria and Burkina Faso Draw, 1-1
Nigeria had this one in the bag. Leading 1-0 and with stoppage time nearly run out, all the Nigerians had to do was hold on for a little longer and earn the three points.
But Burkina Faso's Alain Traore was having none of that. After Jonathan Pitroipa broke into the box but couldn't control the ball amidst a melee in front of the net, the ball found it's way to Traore, who calmly slotted the game-tying tally past the keeper.
And with that, a game Nigeria largely controlled throughout ended in a draw. The Nigerians took the lead after just 23 minutes, after Emmanuel Emenike just barely got a foot on an Ideye Brown clever flick into the box and sent the ball past the keeper.
It was the ultimate "lob the ball deep down the field and hope you find a poacher" goal. And it worked to perfection.
While Chelsea's John Obi Mikel would be excellent throughout the match, the Super Eagles played a little too comfortably after taking the lead, clearly thinking they would win this match 1-0.
That would ultimately be a mistake. With just over 20 minutes remaining, Traore would be subbed into the game. Not long after, Nigerian defender Efe Ambrose would have to leave the game after his second yellow card.
The stage was set for Burkina Faso to equalize, and while the team's advances were largely turned aside, Traore would find the back of the net just before the final whistle.
And like that, three points that Nigeria should have easily taken in this game disappeared. If the Super Eagles fail to advance past the group stage, they'll look back to the failure in this game as the reason why.
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