10-man Ivory Coast held by Guinea

first_imgA ten-man star studded Ivory Coast scrambled for a point against a gritty Guinean side in the opening AFCON Group D encounter.Seydou  Doumbia saved the blushes and dignity of the Ivorian side with a second half equaliser to cancel a Mohammed Yattara early lead in the first.The Ivorians had all to play for but were let down by a moment of madness by AS Roma attacker Gervinho who was shown the exit early in the second half for punching his Guinean marker.He was the best man in the Ivorian side at the time and his exit was a big blow. But Herve Renard’s men managed to salvage a point.It was the Guineans who settled well in the first half running at their Ivorian defence in a desperate attempt for a goal.Their persistence paid off in the 36th minute. Kolo Toure failed to clear his lines and was punished by Yattara. The Lyon based striker struck it hard and high in the six yard box to put the minnows in the lead.The Ivorians searched for the equaliser and it was Gervinho who proved a slippery customer for the Guinean defence but Manchester City new found striker Winfried Bone was always caught out of position.From recess the Ivorian side were desperate for the equaliser. With a goal down, the Elephants went a man down when Gervinho punched his marker in the face.Coach Herve Renard brought on Seydou Doumbia who turned out to be the hero of the Ivorian side when he finished off a great team effort from the Elephants.Yahya Toure who had been quiet on the day found Bone with a superb pass and the new City attacker controlled with his chest before setting   Doumbie for the much needed equaliser. The Ivorians, tagged favourites of the tournament now have a huge hurdle to cross against Cameroon and Mali. Follow Live update of the gameThe game is over. Both teams stewing over what could have been. Guinea will feel good although they wished they could have held on after a red card against Ivory Coast. The Elephants would feel relieved. A draw is better than a loss even if you are favourite to win.90’ Late pressure as a high ball drops into the box but the Guinea player is not well positioned to use it. The game appears to have slowed down. Have both teams accepted the scoreline as the fourth draw of AFCON 2015? 88′ Great defence play by center back Pogba to dispossess Doumbia. If he hadn’t got that right. It would have been a penalty.85′ Would you believe it? Yaya Toure has been replaced. Doukoure who plays for French club Metz, is coming on for the big man.84′ Shirt pulling in the box as players jostle for space for the corner.83’ Former AC Milan man Constant stands over the freekick for Guinea. He is about 35 meters outs. His shot is deflected by Eric Bertrand Bailly for a corner for Guinea.  Eric Bertrand Bailly is down after the shot.80’ Yaya Toure is dispossessed after attempting to stamp his authority in the midfield. A counter attack is on but it fizzles out in the final third. 73′ Ivorian right back Serge Aurier displays great skill very fast on the eye to skin an opponent on the right of the corner flag. He darts dangerously to supply a shot-like pass to Bony at the near post but the angle is too close to the keeper.71’ Great inter passing play creates a great chance…. Great goal!!!! A  lob to Winfred Bony who unselfishly teed up substitute Doumbia inside the box as he slots the ball low into the left post.70’ Guinea effect their first substitution. Camara is coming on for Yattara the goalscorer.63′ Change for Ivory Coast. Solomon Kalou is off for CSKA Moscow forward Doumbia. Montepillier player Tienne is on for Serey Die .62′ Guinea player drags the ball back after cutting inside into the box but he is brought down. The freekick is not explioted well enough 61′ Traore denied by the cross bar after a beautiful shot from long range. He cuts across the midfield, surged a little further and a blast of a shot alomst sealed the favourite fate.57’ Keita has gone down for Guinea after Gervinho tries what looks like a slap. Red card for Ivory Coast’s promising attacking option. He really has let his team down.55’ Yaya Toure misfires across goal with his left foot. He should have tried with his more comfortable right. Neat pass from Gervinho again to Yaya not maximized.53′ Serey Die slides in dangerously on Conte to attract the first yellow card for the Ivory Coast50’ Gervinho holds on to the ball for too long as he runs into the box but the ball is picked out and cleared for a corner to Ivorians. 47’ Bony brings down a ball with his right and lets off a snap shot which whistles past the crossbar. Guinea closing down their opponents more. They will be keen to protect the lead. Ivory Coast players circle the Guinea half.Second half resumes. 45′ Referee whistles for half time.43’ Guinea is looking good with two more dangerous attacks from low crosses into the box. But perhaps the connection is letting them down or the players are not well positioned to take the chances.40’ Ivory Coast attempt to reply immediately through a Winfred Bony pass to Yaya Toure just inside the penalty box has been blocked.35′ Guinea takes a surprise lead after a blast of a shot into the top left corner after a cross from the right. Yattara is the scorer!!!! Keeper stood no chance!!!34′ Gervinho in another dangerous position, shrugs off a marker inside the box but he is blocked by two more defenders. The AS Roma man should be enjoying his freedom in attack.32’ Is it a friendly match for the Ivorians? No urgency. A case of calm confidence or familiar complacency against weaker teams?31’ Traore teases a long cross too far into the box and outside for a goalkick. Earlier his pass on the counter attack was poor. His colleagues will feel let down.26’ Ivory Coast are enjoying a good spell of possession. Another foul on the left.  Ivory Coast’s clear strategy is reliance on both flanks to cut in and destablise the Guinea defense enough for a Winfred Bony moment in the box.22’ 2014 CAF African Player of the Year, Yaya Toure steps up to take a freekick on the left flank. Guinea should be worried about the number of fouls they are conceding. The set up not well taken as a low cross is cleared out.20′ Cross to Winfred Bony to plucked down by his marker.19′ Excellent play by Kalou to get past his opponent on the right flank but another defender stuns him while closing him down. Kalou is on the floor.16′ Gervinho hits the cross bar after Naby Yattara tips his shot. Gervinho skinned two opponents in a swift counterattack.14′ First corner for Ivory Coast. Poor corner. Fofana surges with the ball through the middle but he backtracks. Passes it wide but the low cross inside the box finds no connection7’ Winfred Bony leans into Kamara a little too much after a pass to him at the edge of the area. Guinea will be glad for the ruling. A Bony turn is dangerous but opportunity is wasted.5′ Great run through the middle from Gervinho. He releases a pass to Yattara but he is blocked before he could let off a shot.Ivory Coast have fielded a familiar side with all the big guns except Chelsea star Didier Drogba.  Manchester City new signing Winfred Bony will be closely watched.Referee signals the begining of proceedingsPerennial favourites Ivory Coast line up a 4-3-3 formation against Guinea in the first Group D clash. Guinea was ravaged by Ebola and a win will do some good to a nation in deep mourning after a horrific plague.Ivory Coast: Gbohouo, Aurier, Kolo, Bailly, Kanon, Dié, Tioté, Yaya, Kalou, Bony, Gervinho.Guinea: N Yattara; Issiaga, Pogba, F Camara, Sankoh, N Keita, B Fofana, Constant, Conte, Traore, M Yattara.last_img

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