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AFCON 2023: ‘They defend & attack together’ – Cote d’Ivoire’s Fae hails Nigeria spirit

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By Oyediji Oluwaseun Babatunde

Interim coach of Cote d’Ivoire, Emerse Fae has praised the Nigerian team as they prepare to face off in the final of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Abidjan on Sunday.

Fae was named in an interim capacity to replace Jean Louis Gasset after a disappointing 4-0 loss to Equatorial Guinea in the final group game as they progressed as one of the third placed teams.

Despite two group stage defeats, the Elephants have won three straight games under Fae who is leading their charge for their third AFCON title and the Ivorian acknowledges the Super Eagles’ solidity and team spirit.

“We have learned a lot since their match against us that they have a defensive solidity and they ( Nigeria) have a team a very united team,” Fae admitted to the media.

“They defend and attack together and it’s the solidarity that makes that, of course with the individual qualities of the players that they have because they have kinds of quality.

“But on top of that, the block, and the team spirit they have also allowed them to reach the semi-final.”

Sunday’s final will be a repeat of the second group game between both sides where William Troost Ekong’s penalty separated both sides.

They have not met at this stage of the competition as this will be the first time.

 

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