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sportsmata.com > Football > Mali cruise to quarterfinals, set clash with Ivory Coast.

Mali cruise to quarterfinals, set clash with Ivory Coast.

Mali reached the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) last eight for the first time in over a decade after a narrow 1-0 win over neighbours Burkina Faso on Tuesday. 

The game was a tight affair, with both sides having chances to win.

However, it was Mali who took the lead in the 73rd minute through a goal from midfielder Moussa Djenepo.

Burkina Faso pushed for an equalizer but were unable to find a way through, and Mali held on to secure their place in the last eight.

This is a significant achievement for Mali, who last reached the Afcon quarter-finals in 2013. They will now face the hosts, Ivory Coast, in the last eight on Sunday.

The win was also a welcome relief for Mali coach Mohamed Magassouba, who had come under pressure after his side’s unconvincing performances in the group stage.

“I am very happy for the players and the fans,” Magassouba said after the game. “We knew it would be a tough game, but we showed great character and determination to win.”

“We are now looking forward to the challenge of facing Ivory Coast in the next round.”

Mali’s victory was celebrated by fans across the country. Many took to social media to express their joy and pride in their team.

“This is a great day for Mali,” said one fan. “We are so proud of our team.”

“We can go all the way now,” said another fan. “I believe in this team.”

Mali’s win over Burkina Faso was a hard-fought victory, but it was one that they thoroughly deserved.

They will now go into the last eight full of confidence, and they will be hoping to cause an upset against Ivory Coast.