Host nation Cameroon secured a dramatic 2-1 victory against Burkina Faso in the opening match of the 2021 African Cup of Nations.
The Indomitable Lions headed into their third AFCON meeting against the Stallions unbeaten with one win and a draw.
Burkina Faso's Steeve Yago was booked after 40 seconds of their opening #AFCON2021 match with Cameroon.
According to The Analyst, that was the fastest yellow card given in an AFCON tournament match since André Ayew for Ghana vs. Angola on 24 January 2010 (31 secs).
However, the visitors drew the first blood against the hosts as they sought their first-ever victory over Cameroon in the biennial competition.
Gustavo Sangare's 24th-minute opener, the tournament's first, silenced the home fans at the Paul Biya Stadium.
But events took a dramatic turn for the visitors when they conceded two needless penalties in the space of right minutes.
Bertrand Traoré who assisted Burkina Faso's opener went from hero to villain when he brought down André-Frank Zambo Anguissa with a clumsy tackle in the visitor's box.
Vincent Aboubakar stepped up to net Cameroon's equaliser in the 40th-minute by sending Hervé Koffi the wrong way.
Cameroon kept the pressure after the equaliser and were awarded another penalty about six minutes later after another clumsy tackle by Burkina Faso.
Aboubakar bagged his brace (45+3') by sending Koffi the wrong way again to overturn the game in Cameroon's favour as the hosts entered the break with a 2-1 lead.
According to The Analyst, Aboubakar became the first player to score two penalties in a single AFCON tournament match (excluding shootouts) since Victor Moses for Nigeria vs. Ethiopia in 2013.
Burkina Faso entered the second half with more composure after their late minute defensive blunders saw them concede two late goals in the first half.
Traore tried to restore parity but his thundering shot didn't make it beyond the Cameroon defence, leaving Andre Onana with less to worry about.
Aboubakar was denied a hattrick moments later after the goal was ruled out the goal for offside during the build-up following a lengthy VAR check.
Burkina Faso had no tricks left in their sleeves allowing Cameroon take the well deserved 2-1 victory to top Group A.
No host nation has lost their opening AFCON game in a tournament since Burkina Faso were defeated 1-0 by Cameroon on February 7, 1998.
The Squirrels must win their next two games against Cape Verde and Ethiopia to better their qualification chances into the knockout stages of the competition.