Nigeria vs. Burkina Faso: Jonathan Pitroipa Deserved to Win 2013 AFCON MVP Award

Dan Talintyre@@dantalintyreSenior Analyst IIFebruary 10, 2013

NELSPRUIT, SOUTH AFRICA - FEBRUARY 06, B Y Jonathan Pitroipa from Burkina Faso (L) and Rabiu Alhassan Mohammed from Ghana (R) during the 2013 Orange African Cup of Nations 2nd Semi Final match between Burkina Faso and Ghana at Mbombela Stadium on February 06, 2013 in Nelspruit, South Africa. (Photo by Manus van Dyk / Gallo ImagesGetty Images)
Gallo Images/Getty Images

His country might have fallen at the final hurdle in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, but Burkina Faso's Jonathan Pitroipa's Most Valuable Player Award was one thing that the star midfielder did manage to win.

And it couldn't have been more deserved.

BBC Sport's Farayi Mungazi posted the news via Twitter:

 

#BurkinaFaso's Jonathan Pitroipa voted Player of the Tournament. Deserved. #Afcon2013

— Farayi Mungazi (@BBCFarayi) February 10, 2013

 

The Stade Rennes midfielder was integral in the Stallions' remarkable run through the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations—getting the minnows of the tournament all the way to the final in what had quickly become the Cinderella story of the competition.

And whilst they couldn't go all the way and clinch the title from a deserving Nigerian outfit, Burkina Faso will no doubt take plenty of encouragement and heart from AFCON 2013—and deservedly so given their strong performances throughout.

Pitroipa came to the fore incredibly well when goal-scoring machine Alain Traore was ruled out for the rest of the tournament with injury—netting huge goals when his country needed him, but also providing the spark and creativity required in attack.

The 26-year-old finished with just two goals in the tournament, but his extra-time finish against Togo was pivotal in the Stallions' run to the title.

He will now go back to French club, where he has netted six goals and three assists from his 19 appearances this season as Rennes try to push their way into the top four of Ligue 1.

And if Pitroipa can carry over his international form that was displayed in South Africa, you'd have to think they're a real chance of doing so.

 

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