Edmond Tapsoba: Burkina Faso centre-back targets consistency

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Edmond Tapsoba in action for Bayer LeverkusenEdmond Tapsoba moved to Bayer Leverkusen after spells in Portugal with Leixoes and Vitoria Guimaraes

Burkina Faso defender Edmond Tapsoba says he must put in more consistent performances to have a successful career.

The 23-year-old centre-back has played for German side Bayer Leverkusen since January 2020, but has been linked with a move to the Premier League.

"For a football player the most difficult thing is to stay consistent," he told BBC Sport Africa.

"You can play a good game, but you have to be on top every day and that's what I'm trying to do.

"It's just giving me pressure, and also the population of Burkina Faso is supporting me very well. I'm always trying to make them proud of me."

Aston Villa forward Bertrand Traore is the only player from Burkina Faso to play in the Premier League, but Tapsoba has been tipped to join him in England by those in the West African country.

"I think that Edmond Tapsoba is heading in the right direction." journalist Moussavou Billa said.

"He has demonstrated all the qualities needed to play at any big club. He delivered with Bayer Leverkusen whether in the Europa League or in the Bundesliga.

"Even with the national team he has been a key player. He could play at Liverpool, Manchester United, or Chelsea, or in any Premier League club. Edmond can become the next big Burkina star in the Premier League."

Targeting success with the Stallions

Edmond Tapsoba in action for Burkina FasoTapsoba featured at his first Africa Cup of Nations this year, where Burkina Faso were knocked out by eventual champions Senegal

Tapsoba was part of the Burkina Faso squad which impressed as they reached the semi-finals at this year's Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.

However, the Stallions lost the third-placed play-off to the hosts, and Kamou Malo was then replaced as coach by Hubert Velud.

With qualifiers for the 2023 Nations Cup set to get under way in the international window from 30 May, Tapsoba hopes to make a mark at international level.

"For every African player who plays in Europe, their first dream is play the Africa Cup of Nations, and then the World Cup," he said.

"I think I can take the dream forward again, try to win something.

"I would like to play for one of the five big clubs in the world not for one day, but stay there for the rest of my career and also win something for Burkina Faso."

Meanwhile, Tapsoba is keen to give back to people in his homeland.

"I know where I came from. I cannot say I grew up in a difficult situation, as I grew up in an okay situation," he said.

"I was with people who didn't have anything to eat, anywhere to sleep so when I have what I have today, for me it's important to share with them because they give me advice as well

"From my side, I should give them what I can.

"Every young African player can do what I am doing now but you have to believe in yourself. Don't let anyone try to disorganise you. Follow your dream, work hard and with these two, I think everything will happen."

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