AFCON 2023: Ivory Coast Triumph Over Sadio Mane’s Senegal in Intense Knockout Clash

AFCON 2023: Ivory Coast Triumph Over Sadio Mane’s Senegal in Intense Knockout Clash

Ero Samson
updated at February 13, 2024 at 11:54 AM
In this article:
CAF Africa Cup of Nations logo
Senegal logo
Ivory Coast logo
Cote DIvoire
Ivory Coast
Sadio Mané logo
S. Mané
Al Nassr FC logoFSenegal logo
Ghana Dream FC logo--
Habib Diallo logo
H. Diallo
Al-Shabab FC logoFSenegal logo
Edouard Mendy logo
E. Mendy
Al-Ahli SFC logoGSenegal logo
Nicolas Pépé logo
N. Pépé
Trabzonspor logoDIvory Coast logo
Moussa Niakhaté logo
M. Niakhaté
Nottingham Forest logoDFrance logo
  • The quarter-finals of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations continue to take shape
  • Ivory Coast booked their spot in the final eight with a victory over the Senegalese
  • Reactions have trailed the surprise victory of the Ivorians over the defending champions

The 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) provided another chapter of its unpredictable and captivating narrative as the host nation, Ivory Coast, immersed in a sea of turmoil, eliminated the defending champions and tournament favourites, Senegal.

The match, ultimately requiring penalty kicks to determine a winner, unfolded as many had anticipated, with Aliou Cisse's team taking the lead in the fourth minute through a goal from forward Habibou Diallo.

AFCON, Senegal, Ivory Coast, CAF, Sadio Mane
Ibrahim Sangare and Sadio Mane during the CAF Africa Cup of Nations round of 16 match between Senegal and the Ivory Coast. Image: MB Media.
Source: Getty Images

The rest of the game was marked by a flurry of back-and-forth action, with the Ivorians seeking to secure a favourable outcome in front of their home crowd.

Fortune eventually favoured Les Elephants when Senegalese goalkeeper Edouard Mendy committed a foul on forward Nicolas Pepe, resulting in a penalty. Midfielder Franck Kessie successfully converted the spot kick, ensuring that both teams finished the game tied at one-all.

The extra time, following the completion of the regulation 90 minutes, saw few scoring opportunities, and ultimately, the teams had to be separated by another round of penalty kicks.

While all participating players successfully scored their penalties, Nottingham Forest's defender Moussa Niakhate hit the upright, which was enough to secure victory for Ivory Coast.

Remarkably, the Ivory Coast team that had only parted ways with their manager Jean-Louse Gasset just four days prior and relied on a favourable result from Morocco to secure a place in the knockout rounds had eliminated the defending champions and one of the continent's top-ranked footballing nations.

The extraordinary achievement has ignited reactions from fans in Abidjan and across social media, with many quickly sharing their thoughts on what has undeniably been a rollercoaster of a footballing spectacle.

Fans’ reaction to Ivory Coast's victory

@kwadwosheldon who was in disbelief at what he had witnessed, expressed his thoughts:

"Football never makes sense because look at Ivory Coast! Lmaoo."

@eygyimah emphasised that the Ivorians' achievement could only be attributed to divine intervention:

"They played like it's the World Cup finale. Senegal should have won, but the gods felt differently. The host nation progresses."

@Izy_BodyFitness, pleased with Ivory Coast's victory, shared his excitement:

"Ivory Coast played quality football."

@LarteySteve, who thoroughly enjoyed the unfolding events, commented:

"Football is extremely beautiful. If you're not emotionally involved, honestly."

@rowell_benji chimed in:

"This is why we love the game. Expect the unexpected 😂😂😂."

Following their victory, the Ivorians will face either Mali or Burkina Faso for a spot in the semi-final of the tournament on February 3.

Angola coach hails Super Eagles duo

Sports Brief in another report stated coach of the Angolan team, Pedro Goncalves, has praised two Nigerian strikers ahead of the clash between both nations in the quarter-finals.

The Portuguese manager was full of praise for the qualities of Victor Osimhen and Ademola Lookman.

The 47-year-old also stressed the cohesive defensive efforts displayed by Jose Peseiro's team in preparation for the upcoming clash.

Ero Samson photo
Ero Samson
Samson Ero is a sports journalist with a track record of over five years in the Nigerian media industry. He graduated from Nigerian Institute of Journalism (2021-2023).