A last minute of stoppage time gasp goal from Burkina Faso’s Alain Traore denied Nigerian Super Eagles all three points during a group C match at Mbombela stadium in Nelspruit.
Nigeria were coasting to victory having spurned numerous chances in a match they dominated and were made to pay but substitute Tarore who latched onto a cut back from Jonathan Pitriopa and placed his shot beyond Enyeama in goal for Nigeria for a 1-1 draw result.
The draw will feel like a mugging to Nigeria as it was virtually the last kick of the match. Live wire Ideye Brown whose swift moves and deft touches troubled the Stallions knocked down along ball into the path of Emmanuel Emenike who reacted quickest between two defenders to poke home the opening goal in the 23rd minute.
Nigeria with Obi Mikel pulling strings in the midfield had the lion’s share of play and possession with Burkina Faso main threat coming from Aristide Bance and captain Dagano Moumouni.
They were however largely restricted to long range shots as the Joseph Yobo led backline seemed to cope well until in that last minute when two of them got in each other’s way paving way for the equaliser
Nigeria started with intention and purpose and yet seemed capable of moving up a gear if needs. Ahmed Musa was constant danger linking up with Ikechukwu Uche but for all their industriousness the Nigerians lacked accuracy in front of goal.
At 1-0 one Burkina Faso were always in the game and in the second half coach Paul Put brought in star player Alain Traore for Bance. Traore injected some pace upfront and in the 65th minute crafted a chance for Dagano but the latter drag his shot across goal with Vincent Enyeama in goal for Nigeria drawn out.
The Super Eagles could have increased their lead but they remained wasteful with Uche main culprit. In the 80th minute he dribbled past his marker and with only Abdoulaye Soulama to beat he blazed his effort well over the cross bar.
Mikel had his chance too from within the penalty box but his shot high over the cross-bar showed why it has ages since he last scored for club or country.
Another well worked Nigerian move saw Uche cut back into the box but again he could not hit the target and it looked like it was a matter of time before Nigeria scored a second.
The huge crowd that flocked to Mbombela was instead treated to exciting end when Traore’s goal left all four teams in group C on equal points and equal goals after Zambia and Ethiopia also played out a 1-1 draw in the earlier match.
Nigeria: Enyeama, Echiejile, Yobo, Oboabona, Ambrose, Ogude (Onazi 70’), Mikel, Igiebor, Emenike (Uche 58’), Ideye (Omeruo 78’), Musa
Burkina Faso: Soulama, Koffi, Kone, Koulibaly, Panandetiguiri, Kone, Pitroipa, Rouamba (Razack 82’), Dah (Sanou 46’), Bance (A. Traore 65’), Dagano