Few would have predicted that it would be Nigeria taking on Burkina Faso in the 2013 African Cup of Nations final, but here we are anyway.
Nigeria are the two-time champions who will enter the final with strong favoritism, but the Stallions—who had never won a match on foreign soil at the Nations Cup until this year—are certainly no team to scoff at or write off as a genuine challenger here.
They have consistently defied the odds throughout the tournament and will be looking to finish with one final upset when they walk out this Sunday in South Africa.
Read on for a complete online guide to this match including all the latest injury and team news, plus all the details on how to watch the 2013 AFCON final.
2013 African Cup of Nations Final—Nigeria vs. Burkina Faso
Sunday, February 10, 2013 at approx. 1:00 p.m. ET
FNB Stadium, Soccer City, Johannesburg
Live coverage of the match will be available via Eurosport International, who have covered the majority of the tournament so far.
ESPN3 will cover the match throughout the United States.
A full listing of channels to view the match around the world can be seen here.
Alternatively, check out Bleacher Report's live commentary and reaction.
Latest injury and Team News
As mentioned before, Nigeria come into this match as the strong favorites to win their title AFCON title, but the Super Eagles do have some injury concerns to worry about.
Chelsea star and key midfielder Victor Moses is still undergoing tests to see if he will be right for the final (per BBC Sport) whilst Emmanuel Emenike has sat out several training sessions now. If Moses cannot play, much of the burden in central midfield will fall onto his domestic teammate John Obi Mikel, who has once again been superb this year for Nigeria.
Jonathan Pitroipa will take his place back in the starting side for Burkina Faso here after his ban was overturned—a huge boost for the Stallions.
According to Goal, that ban was overturned because the his sending off in the previous match was deemed to have been an incorrect decision by the referee.
Nigeria appear to be the stronger team, but you simply cannot discount Burkina Faso here–particularity if Victor Moses is ruled out with injury.
Nothing the Stallions have done throughout the tournament has been predicted, and to have even made it this far has stunned those following along. They are the true Cinderella story of the tournament and will therefore come into this one with nothing to lose—something that their opponents cannot quite attest to given the pressure that they will be under to win.
The Super Eagles are a very strong team across the park, so they should more than hold their own against Burkina Faso. But whether they have enough to get the job done in regulation time still remains to be seen, given the attacking depth that the Stallions possess.
I think Nigeria will get there eventually, but not before some drama along the way—including a late game-winning goal deep into extra time.
Prediction: Nigeria 2, Burkina Faso 1 (extra-time)
Who do you think will win the 2013 AFCON Final?
Comment below or hit me up on Twitter: Follow @dantalintyre