Article by David Walker
Outright Odds: 80/1Group C Winners: 9/one
The Ivory Coast topped their qualifying group but the margins between achievement and failure have been so intensive it arrived down to a single penalty kick with just 4 minutes of qualification remaining.
In the penultimate qualifying match, the Ivorians essential a victory against Cameroon to guarantee qualification, but they lost three-two in Abidjan. Their subsequent 3-one away win at Sudan would be meaningless if Globe Cup mainstays Cameroon beat Egypt. The match was all square at 1-1 till Cameroon had been awarded a penalty four minutes into harm time. A successful spot kick would deliver them by means of but Pierre Wome hit the exterior of the submit and the Ivory Coast were heading to Germany.
The Ivory Coast are arguably the strongest African aspect participating in the finals, with Cameroon, Nigeria, Morocco and Senegal all failing to qualify. However, they are also pitted in the toughest group and will will need to be at their greatest in opposition to conventional favourites these kinds of as Argentina and Holland.
Chelsea striker Didier Drogba leads the front line and contributed nine ambitions as his nation competent for the very first time in eight attempts. Arsenal defender Kolo Toure is the most recognisable defender but the group oozes high quality from players mostly plying their trade in France.
Partnering Drogba in assault is Lens ahead Aruna Dindane although playmaker Bonaventure Kalou, from Paris St Germain and St. Ettiene’s Didier Zakora are all able of making an influence. In defence Toure is joined by Abdoulaye Meite from Marseille, Strasbourg’s Etienne Boka and veteran Cyrille Domoraud, now playing for Creteil.
Getting placed in these kinds of a tough qualifying group, the Ivorians will benefit significantly from acquiring a coach of Henri Michel’s stature. The vastly skilled coach is in charge of his sixth national staff following stints at France, Cameroon, Morocco, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates. With 20 years knowledge to call upon, he will ensure Drogba and co. are totally prepared for the process forward.
Whilst the team are powerful in most locations, they are also probe to a lack of concentration. This was highlighted in their qualifier towards Cameroon which could have noticed them miss out on a location in the finals. There are also doubts raised on their potential to play away from home right after qualifying defeats to Egypt and Cameroon and a goalless draw with Libya.
Senegal burst onto the international scene 4 years in the past when they beat an beneath-par France 1- in the opening game so the Ivory Coast could quite possibly do the exact same. If they could do the unthinkable and beat possibly Argentina or Holland, a level in their last match towards Serbia & Montenegro could see them via to the previous 16.
Ivory Coast vs Serbia & Montenegro draw @ five/2
About the Author
David Walker runs a free of charge Globe Cup bets web site and published Globe Cup previews. A totally free 45-page Planet Cup guide is offered from the web site and attributes a “no cost World Cup football shirt” give.