Holders Zambia bombed out of the African Cup of Nations at the group stage on Tuesday when they were held to a goalless draw by little-fancied Burkina Faso.
The Chipolopolo, described by many as lucky winners of last year’s tournament, flopped out of the competition in what looked like a very easy group comprising minnows Ethiopia, Burkina Faso and tottering Nigeria.
Zambia becomes the first winner in 21 years to have failed to advance past the group stage of the competition. The last was Algeria in 1992.
The Southern Africans bombed out as three draws were not enough to help them advance past the group stage.
Nigeria clinched the group’s second slot after defeating Ethiopia 2-0.
Burkina Faso topped the group after holding the Zambians to a goalless draw and were the better side throughout and showed real ambition.
They were not content to simply play for the draw they required and they looked to guarantee top spot by taking all three points.
The final whistle brought the end to a poor display on a horrendous pitch in Nelspruit and Zambia will rue a host of missed chances throughout their matches as they crash out.
Ethiopia v Nigeria
Victor Moses guaranteed his sides progress winning and converting two late penalties against a determined Ethiopian side.
It was a poor match and both sides failed to find any sort of composure in front of goal until late on when Chelsea man Moses was hacked down twice in ten minutes but picked himslef up twice to cooly slot home and send his side through to the quarter finals.
FT: Ethiopia 0-2 Nigeria