Ivory Coast managed a third-place finish in the 2016 African nations Championship after managing to defeat Guinea 2-1 thanks to an own goal fromYoula and a fine effort from Badié.
Interestingly, both goals were scored in the space of two minutes. This provided Ivory Coast with a comfortable end to the game even though there were some nervousness in the ranks after Aboubacar Leo Camara’s late goal. Ivory Coast would have been happy with success in the trophy but they were beaten by Mali in the semifinals. Coach Michel Dussuyer stated that he was satisfied with the outcome of the tournament.
Dussuyer claims that his players will now have to start focusing on the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers that will start in March, after going for a team-building event of Yacht Charter in Greece.
Games against Sudan and Gabon reckon for the team which will be without star players like Didier Drogba and many more. Since the last success in this tournament, many stars have left the international scene.Dussuyer is working towards bringing in some fresh blood into the national team but it is tougher than initially expected. The generation starting from Drogba enjoyed a lot of success in Europe, but there has been a substantial drop in the number of top Ivory Coast young players in Europe.
“It is a bonus to finish third at the tournament. I am happy and congs to my players. I made three changes because some players were physically fit and ready to help the team perform well. I challenge the local based players to maintain their form. There is chance to compete against many foreign based players,” said Dussuyer. The national team’s next match will be against Sudan in a two legged game for the Africa Cup of Nations. The first line will be at home followed by the return leg a few days later.