Hosts Cameroon needed two penalties to kick start their Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) campaign with a 2-1 victory over Burkina Faso at the Olembe Stadium in the capital, Yaounde on Sunday.

A brace from captain Vincent Aboubakar helped the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon recover from a goal down to secure three points.

The five-time champions took charge in the early stage of the game, possessing the ball most of the time and firing three strong fruitless shots towards goalkeeper, Herve Koffi.

But it was the Stallions of Burkina Faso who scored first when Gustavo Sangare, who plays for Ligue 2 outfit Quevilly-Rouen fired home a brilliant volley.

The celebration did not last for long though as Cameroon were awarded two penalties shortly before half-time which Aboubakar converted both.

Roared on by vociferous home fans at the stadium, the Lions could have won by a bigger margin if they had used all the chances that came their way in the second half.

Cameroon will now hope to secure their place in the knockout stage when they clash with Ethiopia on Thursday.

The match was preceded by a colorful display heavily laden with Cameroon culture and customs and ended with fireworks.

Cameroonian President Paul Biya, who was at the Stadium, gave green light for the championship, welcoming the African football teams and fans.

Twenty-four African teams are competing in five cities of the Central African nation.

The final of the tournament will be held on February 6 at the Olembe Stadium.