Ivorian legend, Kolo Toure believes that Ivory Coast must keep up to pace to contain ‘superpowerful’ Victor Osimhen on the attack against Nigeria in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations final at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium on Sunday.
Toure was part of the squad that beat Ghana 9–8 on penalties to win the 2015 AFCON and he wishes to see his country lift the title once again for the first time since he lifted it.
However, it has been a dramatic journey for the Ivorians who sacked their head coach in the group stages after being on the verge of elimination before getting through to the knockout stages, knocking out defending champions Senegal and seeing off DR Congo in the semi-finals.
On the other hand, Nigeria, despite low expectations, has defied doubts to reach the final, with striker Victor Osimhen’s performance under scrutiny.
Osimhen, who has scored one goal at the 2023 AFCON, has been impressive for Nigeria so far at the tournament.
The 25-year-old has been causing havoc for defenders and the Elephants have been advised to get their speed boots on.
“Osimhen is a super powerful player, he’s got unbelievable speed,” he told BBC.
“He has scored only one goal so far but what he brings to that team is incredible. As soon as Nigeria has the ball they will look for Osimhen in the space because he is super quick.
“They need to be really ready for the ball, and just anticipate that and run behind as fast as they can.
“Nigeria changed their shape, playing a 5-4-1 defensively and a 3-4-3 offensively, which really disturbed us. We never found the solution to stop them hitting us on the counterattack.
“With Victor Osimhen up front, and Moses Simon and Ademola Lookman (out wide), they are really dangerous in transition.”