By James Agberebi:
Egypt have qualified for the final of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations after defeating Burkina Faso 4-3 in a penalty shootout after regulation time ended 1-1 in Libreville, Gabon on Wednesday.
Egypt’s veteran keeper Essam El Hadary was the hero as he made two saves off Herve Koffi Kouakou and Bertrand Traore in the shootout.
Egypt, who are back in the final for the fitst time since 2010, will now wait for the winners of Thursday’s second semi-final between Ghana and Cameroon.
Burkina Faso were on the front foot in the early part of the first half but couldn’t break down Egypt’s defensive wall.
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Egypt gradually clawed their way into the game and started creating chances of their own.
The first half ended with both teams failing to break the deadlock.
Egypt eventually took the lead on 66 minutes with star forward Mohamed Salah curling in a left-foot strike into the top right corner.
Burkina Faso replied through Aristide Bance in the 73rd minute, controlling a cross with his chest before shooting past Essam El Hadary to make it 1-1.
Burkina Faso almost won it at the death but El Hadary tipped the ball over for a corner.