Ivory Coast national football team squad, coach, world rankings, AFCON, nickname

Ivory Coast national football team squad, coach, world rankings, AFCON, nickname

Helix Odhiambo
updated at April 12, 2023 at 7:54 PM

Ivory Coast, also referred to as Côte d'Ivoire, has produced some of the best football players in the world. Their golden generation included Didier Drogba, Yaya Toure, Kolo Toure, and Emmanuel Eboue, who played for the Ivory Coast national football team and top clubs in European leagues. So, how many times has Ivory Coast won the Afcon? This article looks at the team's historical run from rubble to glory.

Ivory Coast national football team
Photo: canva.com (modified by author)
Source: UGC

What is the most popular sport in Côte d'Ivoire? Like many African countries, the love of soccer in the West African nation is unmatched. Many fans don't want to miss any actions from grassroots to the top tier league. The national team has also cemented its place among Africa's finest squads, but what is the nickname of Ivory Coast's soccer team?

Profile summary

  • Full name: Ivory Coast national team
  • Nickname: The Elephants
  • Founded: 1960
  • Association: Fédération Ivoirienne de Football
  • Confederation: CAF
  • FIFA code: CIV
  • Affiliated to CAF: 1960
  • Affiliated to FIFA: 1964
  • FIFA ranking: 56 (as of December 2021)
  • Head coach: Patrice Beaumelle
  • Captain: Serge Aurier
  • Leading goalscorer: Didier Drogba
  • Ground: Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny


Ivory Coast national football team trophies
Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara (front C-L) sits next to Yaya Toure (C-R) as the team presents to fans the 2015 Afcon title in Abidjan on 9 February 2015. Photo: Sia Kambou
Source: Getty Images

Football is just a source of entertainment to many, but it brought a peaceful co-existence to the Ivorians, who were embroiled in civil conflict for many years. In 2005, the team made a bold gesture by kneeling in the dressing room on live television, praying for peace. It was a sacrifice that came to pay off.

The Ivorian Football Federation was founded in 1960. However, unlike some African countries, it took them long to burst into the international stage. The Elephants were nowhere near the limelight but gradually overcame their internal challenges and made their way to the top.

So, how many times have Ivory coast been in the world cup? What did their golden generation achieve in Africa?

Afcon history

Ivory Coast national football team Afcon campaign has been quite succesful but not convincing, considering the pool of talents they had at disposal. In 1984, they hosted the African Cup of Nations but finished fifth. Their first title came in 1992 after beating Ghana 11-10 on penalty shootouts in the final played in Dakar, Senegal.

Efforts to bring home a second title took longer than expected. The Elephants finished as runners-up on two occasions (2006 against Egypt and 2012 against Zambia) before their golden generation fulfilled the dream in 2015.

Ivory Coast national football team nickname
Côte d'Ivoire's midfielder Yaya Toure (3rdL), raises the Afcon trophy after winning the 2015 edition on 8 February 2015. Photo: Khaled Desouki
Source: Getty Images

Led by skipper Yaya Toure, the 2015 squad constituted several Ivory Coast legends, including Kolo Toure, Salomon Kalou, Seydou Doumbia, Gervinho, Cheick Tiote, and goalkeeper Boubacar Barry. Despite missing the services of Didier Drogba, the Elephants went on to claim the glory, beating Ghana 9-8 on penalties to end their 22-year wait for the accolade.

World Cup records

The Elephants have featured in three World Cup editions but never progressed past the group stage. They have three wins, a draw and five defeats in nine World Cup games.

2006, Germany

Their first entry was in 2006 when they finished third (3 points), behind Argentina and Netherlands.

  • Ivory Coast 1-2 Argentina
  • Ivory Coast 1-2 Netherlands
  • Ivory Coast 3-2 Serbia and Montenegro

2010, South Africa

Ivory Coast national football team ranking
Yaya Toure of Côte d'Ivoire (C) celebrates his goal with Didier Drogba (L) and teammates during their 2010 World Cup match against N. Korea in South Africa. Photo: Clive Mason
Source: Getty Images

In 2010, they travelled to South Africa hoping to do better but again came third with four points, behind Brazil and Portugal. Ivory Coast's 2010 World Cup squad consisted of familiar figures led by their captain, Didier Drogba. Others included goalkeeper Boubacar Barry, Kolo Touré, Emmanuel Eboué, Didier Zokora, Yaya Touré, Cheick Tioté, Salomon Kalou, and Gervinho.

  • Ivory Coast 0-0 Portugal
  • Ivory Coast 3-1 Brazil
  • Ivory Coast 3-0 North Korea

2014, Brazil

The Elephants failed to reach the knockout stage for the third time following disappointing defeats to Colombia and Greece

  • Ivory Coast 2-1 Japan
  • Ivory Coast 1-2 Colombia
  • Ivory Coast 1-2 Greece

Ivory Coast squad 2021

Ivory Coast’s national football team players
Côte d'Ivoire players train ahead of their Group E Afcon 2021 encounter against Algeria at Stade de Japoma in Douala on 20 January 2022. Photo: Charly Thriballeau
Source: Getty Images

Who is Ivory Coast's national football team captain? Former Tottenham Hotspurs defender Serge Aurier is currently the skipper of his national team. Here is a list of Ivory Coast's national football team players in 2021-22.


  • Sylvain Gbohouo (Wolkite Ketema)
  • Badra Ali Sangare (JDR Stars)
  • Abdoul Karim Cisse (Asec Mimosas)
  • Ira Eliezer Tape (San Pedro)


  • Serge Aurier (Villarreal)
  • Eric Bailly (Man Utd)
  • Willy Boly (Wolves)
  • Wilfried Kanon (Pyramids)
  • Odilon Kossounou (Bayer Leverkusen)
  • Simon Deli (Adana Demirspor)
  • Ghislain Konan (Reims)


  • Habib Maiga (Metz)
  • Maxwel Cornet (Burnley)
  • Serey Die (Sion)
  • Ibrahim Sangare (PSV Eindhoven)
  • Jean-Daniel Akpa Akpro (Lazio)
  • Franck Kessie (AC Milan)
  • Hamed Traore (Sassuolo)
  • Jeremie Boga (Sassuolo)
  • Max Gradel (Sivasspor)
  • Jean Michael Seri (Fulham)


  • Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace)
  • Jean Evrard Kouassi (Trabzonspor)
  • Nicolas Pepe (Arsenal)
  • Sebastien Haller (Ajax)
  • Christian Kouame (Anderlecht)
  • Yohan Boli (Al-Rayyan)
  • Karim Konate (Asec Mimosas)

Ivory Coast's national football team coach

Ivory Coast’s national football team coach
The Elephant's head coach Patrice Beaumelle shouts during their training session. Photo: Charly Triballeau
Source: Getty Images

Patrice Beaumelle is the team's head coach, following his appointment in May 2020 to replace Ibrahim Kamara. Under his management, he took the team to Afcon 2021 but failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

All-time top scorer

Ivory Coast legends
Didier Drogba of Côte d'Ivoire gestures during their 2014 World Cup Group C match against Colombia at Estadio Nacional on 19 June 2014 in Brasilia, Brazil. Photo: Warren Little
Source: Getty Images

Former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba is Côte d'Ivoire's leading scorer with 65 goals in 105 matches between 2002 to 2014. However, Didier Zokora is the team's most capped player with 123 games. Kolo Habib Toure had 120 caps.

Ivory Coast national football team world rankings

According to the latest FIFA ranking, The Elephants currently sits in position 56 globally. In Africa, they are ranked 10th. In February 2015, they were placed 20th in the world and second in Africa behind Algeria.

Missing out on the 2022 World Cup in Qatar might have come as a surprise to many Ivory Coast national football team fans, but some are hoping the team will come back stronger for the global showpiece. For now, their focus remains on winning the Africa Cup of Nations for the third time.

Ivory Coast national football team fans are probably disappointed after failing to make it to the 2022 World Cup but hope to lift their third Afcon title in Cameroon.

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Helix Odhiambo photo
Helix Odhiambo
Helix Odhiambo is an award-winning Kenyan journalist and content creator with over 6 years of experience. In 2016, he won the Goal Blaze Correspondent Award for young writers.