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Cote D’Ivoire Win 3rd AFCON Title

Cote d’Ivoire came from behind to thrash Nigeria 2:1 in the finals of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Tournament to win their third title after nine years.

Goals by Frank Kessie and Sébastien Haller powered the hosts’ ultimately deserving victory in a thrilling night against favourites Nigeria at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Abidjan on February 11.

All two goals were assisted by Brighton and Hove Albion’s Simon Adingra in the second half.

The Ivorians seemed like they would take the lead but earlier attempts by Haller and Adingra all failed to reach the net either going wide or being palmed away by Stanley Nwabali.

It was the Super Eagles who first got onto the score sheet when William Troost-Ekong headed home a corner a few minutes before recess.

Another corner awarded to Emerse Faé’s side after a range strike was palmed off by Nwabali gave them the chance to level in the 62nd minute. Frank Kessie caught Nwabali off guard and headed in the leveller to bring hope to the once uninspiring Elephants.

After persistent efforts for the winner by both sides, the hosts finally got it when a cross from Adingra found Haller just in time to toe it into the goal post sending the entire Cote d’Ivoire supporters into a frenzy.

They become the 12th country to host and win the tournament after 18 years. The last country to host and win was Egypt in 2006.

The Ivorians pocketed US$7,000,000 aside from the trophy, while Nigeria took home US$4,000,000 as runners-up.

The Elephants now have their third title after winning in 1992 in Senegal and 2015 in Equatorial Guinea.

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