Coach Emerse Fae Explains How Ivory Coast Stopped Nigeria From Winning 2023 AFCON

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The caretaker coach of Ivory Coast, Emerse Fae, has described how his team managed to beat the Super Eagles in the 2023 AFCON.

On February 11, 2023, the Super Eagles of Nigeria had the opportunity to win their fourth AFCON title at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium, Ebimpe, Abidjan, in front of over 60,000 spectators. Despite beating Ivory Coast in the group stage, the hosts of the tournament proved to be a very hard nut to crack in the final. Ivory Coast enjoyed a massive possession of the ball, but the Super Eagles ended the first half with a 1-0 lead. In the second half, the game completely turned in favour of the Ivorians as they scored two goals to end the encounter with a 2-1 win. The scoreline was enough to earn them their third AFCON title in style. After the game, Emerse Fae, who was merely an assistant coach when the tournament started but was made the caretaker coach of the team after the sack of Jean-Louis Gasset, said his team took advantage of how tired the Eagles were heading to the second half. The former Ivory Coast head coach stressed that he told his team to be more intense in the second half, which paid off favourably. “We noticed the Nigerian players were tired in the first half. They were not at their usual best,” the Ivorian tactician told reporters. “I told my players during the half-time break that we must increase the intensity of our game and it worked out well for us. “It was not an easy game but the good thing is that we won at the end of the day.”

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