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Tapsoba Urges Commitment to Elevate Burkina Faso's National Pride

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Prince Jean

Jun 17, 2024

World Cup Qualifications

Bundesliga champion with Bayer Leverkusen, Edmond Tapsoba, now sets his sights on making World Cup history. Instagram:@edmondtapsoba

Bayer Leverkusen defender Edmond Tapsoba is dreaming big, hoping to guide Burkina Faso to their first-ever FIFA World Cup™ qualification. After four rounds of CAF qualifying, the West African nation is currently third in Group A.

Following his call-up for the FIFA World Cup 2026™ qualifiers, Tapsoba received a hero's welcome upon arriving in Ouagadougou. The 25-year-old had just completed a stellar season with Bayer Leverkusen, helping his club achieve an unbeaten domestic season, winning the Bundesliga and German Cup double, and finishing as runners-up in the UEFA Europa League.

"I want to give back all the happiness my people give me,"

Tapsoba shared in an exclusive interview with FIFA.

"They never stop supporting and encouraging me, even in difficult times."

Nicknamed "Zaksoba," meaning "the head of the house," Tapsoba aspires to lead Burkina Faso to their first FIFA World Cup™.

"We’re dreaming about it and giving ourselves the means to get there,"

he stated, emphasizing the importance of concentration and learning from previous generations.

Tapsoba has exchanged ideas with veteran players like Jonathan Pitroipa, Aristide Bance, and Djakaridja Kone, reflecting on the near-miss in the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign.

"Our brothers came so close to qualifying but came up against a great Algerian team,"

he lamented.

"The country deserves to again experience that feeling, but in a more prolonged way."

After the 2023 CAF Africa Cup of Nations, where Burkina Faso reached the knockout phase, the team made strategic changes. Brama Traore, former coach of the U-20 and U-23 teams, was appointed head coach in March. Tapsoba praised Traore's approach, stating,

"He’s a coach who puts discipline at the heart of our game and knows how to bang his fist on the table when he has to."

Despite recent setbacks – a 2-1 loss to Egypt and a 2-2 draw with Sierra Leone – Burkina Faso remains in the top three of their section.

"We knew when we set our goal that it wasn't going to be easy, but we're still alive,"

Tapsoba said confidently.

"The road to North America is a long one, and I remain confident in the abilities of my team."

With determination and strategic focus, Tapsoba and his teammates are committed to making Burkina Faso proud on the global stage.

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