AFCON 2023: Super Eagles Captain, Ahmed Musa Downplays Ivory Coast Resurgence Ahead of Final

AFCON 2023: Super Eagles Captain, Ahmed Musa Downplays Ivory Coast Resurgence Ahead of Final

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe, Ero Samson
updated at February 13, 2024 at 11:54 AM
In this article:
CAF Africa Cup of Nations logo
Nigeria logo
Super Eagles logo
Super Eagles
South Africa
Ivory Coast logo
Cote DIvoire
Ivory Coast
William Troost-Ekong logo
W. Troost-Ekong
PAOK Saloniki logoDNigeria logo
Ahmed Musa logo
A. Musa
Sivasspor logoFNigeria logo
Cameroon logo
Senegal logo
Democratic Republic of the Congo logo
DR Congo
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Mali logo
  • The 2023 Africa Cup of Nations final continues to herald the continent’s football scene
  • Ivory Coast have witnessed a resurgence since their underwhelming group-stage campaign
  • Nigeria’s Super Eagles captain, Ahmed Musa, has spoken on the recent form of the host nation

The 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) climaxes with the enthralling showdown between Nigeria’s Super Eagles and tournament host, Ivory Coast.

With contrasting journeys to the final, both teams reignite their rivalry with much higher stakes at play this time around.

Anticipation for the grand finale at the Stade Alassane Ouattara is palpable, fuelled by discussions surrounding Ivory Coast's resurgence under the guidance of rookie manager, Emerse Fae.

AFCON, Nigeria, Super Eagles, CAF, Ivory COast, Ahmed Musa
Ahmed Musa during the press conference ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations final between Nigeria and Ivory Coast. Image: Franck Fife.
Source: Getty Images

Under the 40-year-old's leadership, Ivory Coast has transformed from their shaky group stage performances, securing victories over strong contenders like Senegal, Mali, and DR Congo in the knockout rounds.

While some fans and observers of the Ivorian team are confident in their newfound momentum, believing they can overcome Nigeria, whom they lost to earlier in the tournament, the captain of Nigeria’s Super Eagles, Ahmed Musa, holds a different perspective.

Musa on Ivory Coast team

The 31-year-old took to the media alongside coach, Jose Peseiro, for the final pre-match briefing of the tournament, touching on the form of the Ivory Coast team.

As captured by Sports Brief, the Sivasspor star stated:

“There is nothing new about the Ivorian team. It’s just some tactical changes, and a few players came into the starting lineup. We just have to go back to look at the previous game we played against them.
Also, check out their recent games and see what we can do with that. I think that’s the more important thing.”

The Nigerian captain's sentiments reflect the growing confidence within the Super Eagles' camp. Nigeria delivered one of the standout performances of the tournament in their group stage victory over Ivory Coast and aims to replicate that success in the final.

Troost-Ekong on the secret to Nigeria’s success

Sports Brief in another report stated that Super Eagles defender, William Troost-Ekong, has disclosed the secret to Nigeria’s success at the AFCON.

The West African giant has turned the corner, recording a string of impressive victories, including against Cameroon and the host nation, Ivory Coast.

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe photo
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe is a Ligue 1, Bundesliga, and La Liga editor with five-year experience. He previously worked with Sports Corna and 360SportsGH.
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).