African 'Mourinho' picks four new Burkinabe
Rising football force Burkina Faso have named four newcomers in a 26-man squad to face South Africa at Ellis Park Wednesday in a high-profile friendly.
The new faces chosen by Portuguese coach Paulo Duarte include defender Moussa Doumbia and midfielders Fadil Sidou and Lossemby Karaboue from French clubs plus Switzerland-based striker Abdoulkarim Yoda.
Duarte, who has been likened to compatriot and Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho after lifting the Stallions to fourth on the FIFA African rankings, also included all his stars for a clash with seventh-placed South Africa.
These include midfielders Charles Kabore of Marseille and Jonathan Pitroipa of Rennes and striker Alain Traore of Auxerre, who struck four of 11 goals in three 2012 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Namibia and Gambia.
Also called up is controversial defender Herve Zengue from Russian club Tarek Grozny, who Namibian officials say was born in Cameroon and is ineligible despite being married to a Burkinabe.
Namibia have lodged a protest with the Cup of Nations organisers which will be heard during September and, if successful, Burkina Faso stand to surrender six points garnered from 4-0 and 4-1 home and away victories.
"We have a great generation of footballers with an average age of 26 and I am slowly but surely bringing new faces into the squad," said 42-year-old former defender Duarte.
Since narrowly failing to get past the first round at the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Angola, Burkina Faso have won five matches, drawn one, lost one, scored 17 goals and conceded five.
Young captain Kabore hailed Duarte: "Thanks to him we have a good squad now, full of self belief and team spirit. Our immediate aim is to reach the 2012 Cup of Nations and then the World Cup in Brazil."
The squad to face Bafana Bafana (The Boys) includes footballers from France (8), Portugal, Qatar (3 each), Russia, Moldova (2 each), Belgium, Turkey, Romania, Germany, Poland, Switzerland, Egypt and Libya.
Fearful of complacency, South Africa coach Pitso Mosimane has warned his squad that the Stallions are "not a mickey mouse team" and were chosen because of their similar build and mentality to upcoming Cup of Nations opponents Niger.
Goalkeepers: Daouda Diakite (Turnhout/BEL), Germain Sanou (St Etienne/FRA)
Defenders: Madi Panandetiguiri and Mamadou Tall (Uniao Leiria/POR), Moussa Doumbia (Istres/FRA), Ibrahim Gnanou (Alania Vladikavkaz/RUS), Paul Keba Koulibaly (Al-Sowaihili/LBA), Bakari Kone (Guingamp/FRA), Herve Zengue (Tarek Grozny/RUS)
Midfielders: Wilfried Balima and Florent Rouamba (Sheriff Tiraspol/MDA), Charles Kabore (Marseille/FRA, capt), Lossemby Karaboue (Nancy/FRA), Mahamoudou Kere (Konyaspor/TUR), Mohamed Koffi (Petrojet/EGY), Djakaridja Kone (Dynamo Bucharest/ROM), Jonathan Pitroipa (Rennes/FRA), Fadil Sidou (Le Mans/FRA)
Strikers: Aristide Bance (UMM Salal/QAT), Moumouni Dagano (Al-Sailiya/QAT), Yahaya Kebe (Al-Kharitiyath/QAT), Wilfried Sanou (Cologne/GER), Abdoulrazak Traore (Lechia Gdansk/POL), Alain Traore (Auxerre/FRA), Narcisse Yameogo (Uniao Madeira/POR), Abdoulkarim Yoda (Sion/SUI)
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