NELSPRUIT, South Africa, Jan 25 AFP - Alain Traore produced two of the goals of the competition to lift 10-man Burkina Faso to a 4-0 win over Ethiopia on Friday and end their 18-match winless run at soccer's Africa Cup of Nations.
Burkina's last victory in the continental showcase came back in 1998, but Traore ended that run in style to push the west African nation to the top of Group C and within touching distance of the last eight.
And three of the goals came after goalkeeper Abdoulaye Soulama was red carded on the hour mark for handling outside his box.
Coached by Belgian Paul Put, this priceless win lifted them up to four points, with Zambia and Nigeria, who drew 1-1 earlier, on two and Ethiopia on one.
With quarter-final qualification going down to the wire, Burkina Faso take on Zambia while Ethiopia face Nigeria in Rustenburg on Tuesday.
Lorient midfielder Traore earned a start on the strength of his starring role in bagging the equaliser deep in stoppage time against Nigeria on Monday.
And he fully repaid his coach's confidence when scoring either side of the break, and setting up Djakaridja Kone for the third.