8 February 2013

Burkina Faso: Ecstatic Celebrations in Ouagadougou

Since Burkina Faso’s shootout win against the Black Stars in the Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals, the nation’s capital has erupted with soccer fever.

For two nights, the city has seen massive celebrations as young and old Burkinabes fete the national team’s first ever advancement to AFCON finals,

Immediately after the semi-final match on Wednesday evening, the streets of Ouagadougou were filled with proud and impassioned fans. “People just went crazy!” said Isabel, a resident of Ouaga. “There was music playing and people were running around.” In true Burkinabe form, many people immediately jumped on their motos, the city’s preferred means of transport, to celebrate the occasion.

“There was a lot of crazy activity on motos. People were doing donuts and wheelies,” Isabel explained. “Everyone was so excited.”

According to Burkinabe news source Sidwaya, the team’s advance to the final match has sparked a massive demand for paraphernalia with the national colors, green red and yellow. Vuvuzelas, jerseys, flags, and hats are flying off shelves and street carts. Mountable moto flags have proved particularly popular.

And Burkinabes have yet another reason to celebrate: CAF officials have officially withdrawn Jonathan Pitroipa’s controversial red card, allowing the team’s star forward to play in the final. Pitroipa was sent off the pitch following a controversial call by Tunisian referee Slim Jdidi in the semi-finals against Ghana. Jdidi has since been suspended.

The Burkinabe Stallions will face the Nigerian Super Eagles in the AFCON finals this Sunday.

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