Burkina Faso have advantage over Ghana on dodgy AFCON pitch

Burkina Faso will have a huge advantage over Ghana on the ragged and much-criticized field in Nelspruit when they clash in the semi-finals of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations on Wednesday.

Sand rises from the pitch as Burkina Faso's Saidou Mady Panandetiguiri, left, fights for the ball with Ethiopia's Seyoum Tesfaye during their African Cup of Nations group C match at the Mbombela stadium in Nelspruit

Burkina Faso will have a huge advantage over Ghana on the ragged and much-criticized field in Nelspruit when they clash in the semi-finals of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations on Wednesday.

The sandy and bumpy field at the Mbombela Stadium is from the lush surface in Port Elizabeth where the Black Stars has played all its games so far in the competition in South Africa.

Seeking to end a 31-year wait for a title for one of Africa’s top teams, coach Kwesi Appiah won’t have the advantage of previous experience at Mbombela at this tournament — unlike Ghana’s opponents Burkina Faso.

The Stallions have played four matches at Mbobela ahead of the semi-final, leaving the Ghanaians to fly to the northern city on Monday and quickly try to get used to a field branded “a disgrace” and embarrassing for African football by Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor.

It was also described as “not good enough” for the tournament by the organizing Confederation of African Football.

The Mbombela Stadium surface promises to be an uncomfortable experience for the skilful Ghanaians.

The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium field in Port Elizabeth has helped Ghana’s slick passing game, allowing its team of quick and talented youngsters to play.

Conversely, Burkina Faso has made the last eight for the first time on foreign soil by flooding the midfield and shutting down more expansive teams on the Nelspruit sand.

That leaves Ghana playing catch-up ahead of the semi-final.

READERS COMMENTS

  1. Myself says:

    You guys are hypocrites..When Zambia who also play a slick passing game raised these concerns and how the pitch affected their performances, you were quick to call them names but alas, you’ve found yourselves in the same predicament…..whats good for the goose, should be good for the gander…..

    • GH FUO, THINK BIG!!! says:

      AA MUST STRIVE FOR PERFECTION!. STRIVE FOR PERFECTION!
      STRIKERS/attackers win you a match, DEFENDERS win you a tournament!
      AA, NEUTRALIZE THESE BURKINA PLAYERS AND YOU WILL WIN…Jonathan Pitriopa, Charles Kabore, Moumouni Dagano
      FYI: aa should START the continental AND LOCAL BASED PLAYERS IN THIS GAME. ASANTE, KISSIS, AFFUL, CLOTTEY, AWAL….MUST ALL START IN THIS GAME.
      THEY CAN COMPETE BOOT FOR BOOT WITH THE BUGA BUGA PITCH AND THE BURKINA PLAYERS. IM LOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING YIADOM IN THIS GAME.
      HIS HEIGHT, SPEED AND SKILL WILL BE WORRYSOME FOR THE BURKINA DEFENDERS…

  2. Bra Kwame says:

    Massa, you guys should stop these funny excuses. Our play in all four matches in this tournament has not been slick even though we qualified.

  3. STUPID GHANAIAN says:

    Then others, like Togo and Zambia, who earlier brought forward such concerns have been vindicated. Now its our time to play in that pitch. So no excuses! Foolish! We have to win though.

  4. Aikins says:

    I think de pitch is already there so the starrs ve to cope.most of them ve played on even worse pitches dan dis before they moved abroad