NIG vs CIV: I. Coast Boss Discloses What He Would Do Differently vs Nigeria After Group Stage Loss

NIG vs CIV: I. Coast Boss Discloses What He Would Do Differently vs Nigeria After Group Stage Loss

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
updated at February 13, 2024 at 11:54 AM
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  • Emerse Fae is keen on changing Ivory Coast's fortunes against Nigeria in the AFCON final
  • The two sides met in the group stages of the AFCON, with the Super Eagles winning 1-0
  • However, Fae says he would approach the game differently from the group stage tie

Interim Ivory Coast manager Emerse Fae has shed light on what he would do differently against Nigeria in the AFCON final after their group-stage loss to the Super Eagles.

The Elephants succumbed to a disappointing defeat to Nigeria in their second Group A game of the soon-to-end continental championship.

William Troost-Ekong, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, group stage, AFCON, final
William Troost-Ekong scored the only goal as Nigeria beat Ivory Coast in the group stages of the 2023 AFCON. Photo by Visionhaus.
Source: Getty Images

It was the first of their two defeats in the competition. Since then, head coach Jean Louis-Gasset has left his post, with assistant manager Emerse Fae steering affairs as the stop-gap boss.

His brief reign has seen a complete transformation of the side, bereft of conviction and spirit. Fae's takeover has resuscitated Ivory Coast's hopes of being the first host nation to win the AFCON on home soil since Egypt in 2006.

But standing in the path of the 40-year-old and glory is Nigeria, a side they met in the group stages.

Fast forward, the former OGC Nice midfielder would have to prepare his charges to exact revenge at the Stade Olympique Alassane Ouattara, the venue for the 2023 AFCON final.

Ahead of the highly anticipated showdown between two of the continent's football powerhouses, Emerse explained the lessons he has picked up from the previous game and what he would do differently to ensure a win for the Elephants.

"I believe the main lesson we have drawn in the group stage game against Nigeria is that in this competition, we are supposed to expect the unexpected," he said, as captured by Sports Brief.

Emerse admitted Nigeria took them by surprise in the first game but will take the necessary measures to foil the Super Eagles' attempts to win a fourth AFCON.

"We prepared for them [Nigeria], but they surprised us without their formation, so they took us aback.
"So, we must focus and be ready for tactical strategies, which could change tomorrow. We have to be patient and focus on our strengths."

Haller promises 'no regrets' in AFCON final

Sports Brief also reported that Ivory Coast star Sebastien Haller has urged his side to "leave with no regrets" as they attempt to complete a Hollywood-esque comeback in Sunday's AFCON final on home soil against Nigeria.

Haller reckons that since the Elephants recovered from a near-group stage exit to reach the final, they will leave no stone unturned in the Grand Finale.

He scored the only goal of the game as the two-time African champions dumped DR Congo out of the competition at the semifinal stage.

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.