The Africa Cup of Nations began with a colorful opening ceremony in Johannesburg's Soccer City stadium, South Africa. Originally, the tournament was supposed to take place in Libya. But after the country's revolution, the organizers moved the event to South Africa.
Despite its loud and colorful fans, host country South Africa only managed to reach the quarterfinals, in which it lost to Mali. Defending champions Zambia crashed out at the group stage.
Cape Verde's Heldon Ramos has every reason to celebrate. His team, the "Blue Sharks," reached the quarterfinals without conceding a game. Then their dream rum ended. But by then Cape Verde had already won the hearts of soccer fans. It was the team's first Africa Cup of Nations for which they have the people to thank. Cape Verdians raised money for their team to travel.
The vuvuzelas are back! Ethiopian fans threw plastic vuvuzelas and other things onto the pitch to protest a red card in the game against Zambia. In a following game, they used the Ethiopian flag to apologize for their behavior.
Ghanaian fans were still smiling when their team was one of the favorites. Ghana has won the Africa Cup four times, but the last time was 31 years ago. In the three last championships, Ghana come second, third and fourth. This time they lost to Burkina Faso in a thrilling semi-final.
It was a big surprise when Burkina Faso made it to the finals. Ghana (in white) were leading, but 60 minutes into the match, Aristide Bancé, a forward for Bundesliga team FC Augsburg, scored the equalizer. Penalties decided the match.
Nigeria will play Burkina Faso for the Africa Cup of Nations Championship. Nigeria put on a display of strength in the semi-finals when they beat Mail 4-1 Nigeria's "Super Eagles" have already won the Africa Cup twice, while this is the first time for Burkina Faso.
For African fans, the enthusiasm for football doesn't end when their team is eliminated as these South Africans show. These fans are waving flags from Cameroon and Cape Verde, and they are promoting a united Africa.
Since January, 16 countries have been battling it out for the African Cup of Nations. It's now down to Nigeria and first-time Finalists, Burkina Faso.