10-man Burkina Faso take giant stride towards knockout stage
updated 4:55 PM EST, Fri January 25, 2013
Alain Traore celebrates scoring in Burkina Faso's 4-0 win over Ethiopia in Mbombela.
- Burkina Faso beat Ethiopia 4-0 in Group C match at Africa Cup of Nations
- Alain Traore scores twice in commanding performance
- Burkina Faso goalkeeper Abdoulaye Soulama sent off in the second half
- Holders Zambia and Nigeria drew 1-1 in earlier match
(CNN) -- Ten-man Burkina Faso boosted their chances of reaching the quarterfinals of the Africa Cup of Nations Friday with a 4-0 trouncing of Ethiopia in Mbombela.
The superb victory, owing much to two-goal Alain Traore, left them in pole position in Group C after holders Zambia and Nigeria drew 1-1 in the early kick off in Rustenburg.
Burkina Faso were leading 1-0 through a first half Traore strike when they had goalkeeper Abdoulaye Soulama sent off in the second half for handling the ball outside his area.
But Traore, who plays for Lorient in the French League, struck minutes later with a blistering shot from just outside the area to all but sink Ethiopia's chances of getting back into the match with a man advantage.
Tiny island makes football history
Egypt's football fans demand justice
He had also scored Burkina Faso's last-gasp equalizer against Nigeria in the opening match of the tournament in South Africa.
Traore then set up Djakaridja Kone for the third as the Ethiopia defense opened up again.
Jonathan Pitroipa rounded off the win with the fourth in stoppage time to make it a miserable evening for the Ethiopian fans who had made up the majority of a sizable crowd in the stadium.
It left Burkina Faso with four points from two games, with Zambia and Nigeria on two apiece. Ethiopia have just one point.
Read: Four-time champions Ghana on course for quarters
Zambia, who won last year's championship, looked headed for the exit door when they trailed Nigeria late into their game.
But they were awarded a controversial penalty, which was converted with considerable aplomb by Zambia goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene, lofting his effort into the roof of the net.
Mweene had been at the receiving end of a first half spot kick awarded to Nigeria, but watched on as Chelsea's Jon-Obi Mikel scuffed a feeble effort wide of the post.
Henri Richard's Zambia were encouraged by the miss, but it was Nigeria who struck first through Emmanuel Emenike in the 57th minute.
That was one of the worst calls I've seen in the history of football
It looked enough to seal through crucial points until Davies Nkausu tangled with Ahmed Musa in the penalty area and the referee pointed to the spot.
Nigeria goalkeeper and captain Victor Enyeama was disgusted by the award and was well beaten by his counterpart, who regularly takes penalties South Africa Premier League club Free State Stars.
"That was one of the worst calls I've seen in the history of football," he told AFP.
The group will be decided next Tuesday with Burkina Faso taking on Zambia in Mbombela, while Ethiopia face Nigeria in Rustenburg.
Part of complete coverage on
Be part of CNN's coverage of European Champions League matches and join the social debate.
updated 9:56 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
The Bundesliga model of sustainability is very much in vogue. But are Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund creating a dangerous duopoly?
updated 1:10 PM EDT, Fri May 17, 2013
David Beckham embraced his tag as a "gay icon" and has been credited with breaking the big taboo -- homosexuality in football.
updated 3:50 AM EDT, Mon May 13, 2013
'King' Alex Ferguson is quitting Manchester United but the $3.17 billion brand will survive, according to experts.
updated 10:18 AM EDT, Tue May 7, 2013
Italian football lags behind its other European rivals commercially, but newly-crowned Italian champions Juventus is showing Serie A clubs an example of revival.
updated 10:34 AM EDT, Wed April 24, 2013
Luis Suarez's biting of Branislav Ivanovic is the latest episode of moments of madness when soccer stars behave badly.
updated 5:38 AM EDT, Fri March 29, 2013
Sunderland's partnership with the Nelson Mandela Foundation is part of its bid to woo the African market.
updated 11:58 AM EDT, Thu March 28, 2013
Each year as many as 700 Cameroonian young footballers leave Africa in search of a professional career abroad.
updated 8:01 AM EDT, Mon May 6, 2013
Referees across Europe are feeling the heat. Insulted, threatened, chased off the field, attacked, hospitalized and, tragically, killed.
updated 7:25 AM EST, Tue February 26, 2013
Footballers have a battery of physios, fitness trainers and doctors all striving to fine-tune their physique -- but are they missing a trick?
updated 9:24 AM EST, Tue February 26, 2013
No Englishman has won the EPL title in over 20 years, while a leading manager reveals that English coaches are now "not respected abroad."
updated 5:33 AM EDT, Mon May 13, 2013
Hardcore Italian football "ultra" Federico is a Lazio supporter who happily admits directing monkey chants at black players.
updated 6:23 AM EST, Tue March 5, 2013
When Jupp Heynckes made his Bundesliga debut as a player in 1965, the name of Bayern Munich was a new one for the nascent German league.
updated 2:02 PM EST, Tue February 19, 2013
Football's world governing body FIFA has confirmed it will use goal-line technology at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
updated 9:03 AM EST, Tue February 19, 2013
Match-fixing has become a worldwide issue, with hundreds of matches under investigation -- but how do you actually fix a football game?
updated 12:00 PM EST, Mon February 18, 2013
U.S soccer star Robbie Rogers has "come out" as gay on the day he retired from the game, making the announcement on his blog.
updated 5:31 PM EST, Mon February 11, 2013
The wealth of owners like Chelsea's Roman Abramovich often fuels success, but for other clubs such backers prove a mixed blessing.
updated 7:47 AM EST, Thu January 31, 2013
Fireworks inside his own house, a car crash in his first week at Manchester City, that iconic t-shirt -- the EPL will miss Mario Balotelli.
updated 8:42 AM EST, Wed January 30, 2013
The Secret Footballer reveals the complex issues surrounding racism in the English Premier League.
updated 10:43 AM EST, Wed January 30, 2013
The death of 73 football fans in Port Said tragedy continues to haunt Egypt.