story Velud hands debut Burkina Faso call-ups for trio on AFCON qualifiers

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New Burkina Faso head coach Hubert Velud has named three new players in his squad for next week’s TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations against Cape Verde and Eswatini.

Denmark-based midfielder Abdoul Razack Yoda, who plays for Hobro, has been given his first call-up with the Stallions to impress the coaches.

The 21-year-old has been in good form this term that has seen him play in most of the club’s matches this term.

San Jose Earthquakes winger Ousseini Bouda of the American top-flight side has also been given his first call-up to the Burkina national team.

The 22-year-old, who trained at the Ghanaian academy Right to Dream, is rewarded for his form with the MLS club, having played in all of the club’s matches this season.

Home-based left-back Cheikh Oumar Ouédraogo of ASFA-Yennega will also join the senior national team for the first time.

The three players are part of the 29 players for next month’s TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations, Cote d’Ivoire 2023 qualifications double-header.

Majority of the players invited for the two games against Cape Verde and Eswatini were present with the national team at the last Africa Cup of Nations.

The best young player of the tournament in Cameroon Issa Kabore was named by Velud and will be joined by Edmond Tapsoba, Ibrahim Blati Toure, Dango Ouattara and Gustavo Sangare who had an excellent campaign with the Stallions at the tournament in January.

Abdoul Mayker Yabre, who plies his trade in the Italian Serie C with Legnago Salus makes the squad as well as top scorer of the Burkina Faso Ligue 1 Mohammed Lamine Ouattara who is making a return to the national team following his impressive displays at new club JS Kabylie in Algeria.

The 18-year-old winger Joffrey Nino Bazie who switched from Salitas FC to French club LOSC Lille after excelling in the U20 AFCON last year has also been called up.

Velud was tasked to guide the Stallions to secure qualification for next year’s tournament when he was appointed to replace Kamou Malo.

Malo led the Burkina Faso team to a fourth place finish at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.

Burkina Faso will first play against Cape Verde at the Grand Stade de Marrakech in Morocco on Friday, June 3, 2022 before facing Eswatini four days later.