Sports News of Tuesday, 10 January 2017
Ivory Coast international Salomon Kalou believes Ghana will offer the biggest threat to their hopes of defending the Africa Cup of Nations.
The Hertha Berlin forward expects Ivory Coast to shine again but strong competition could come in from fellow West Africans Ghana.
He told Omnisport: “Ghana will be our biggest threat. They always will be, they’re our neighbours.
“We are cool with them but we have competition with them. It’s fun to play against them. I think they will be in the semi-final.
“Of course people expect us to do well because we’re the defending champions. I think people expect us to at least reach the semis.
“When you’ve won it once you want to win it more. We have the right mentality and good dynamic because we haven’t lost for a long time.
“Since we won the cup we haven’t lost a game. So we want to continue that for as long as possible because the mentality is high.”
Cote d’Ivoire are in Group C at Afcon 2017 alongside DR Congo, Morocco and Togo.
Goalkeepers: Sylvain Gbohuo (TP Mazembe – DR Congo), Badra Sangare (AS Tanda – Ivory Coast), Mande Sayouba (Stabaek – Norway)
Defenders: Serge Aurier (PSG – France), Mamadou Bagayoko (St Trond VV – Belgium), Eric Bailly (Manchester United – England), Simon Deli (Slavia Prague – Czech Rep), Ousmane Viera Diarrassouba (Adanaspor – Turkey), Wilfried Kanon (ADO La Haye – Netherlands), Lamine Kone (Sunderland AFC – England), Adama Traore (FC Bale – Switzerland)
Midfielders: Victorien Angban (Grenade – Spain), Cheik Doukoure (FC Metz – France), Franck Kessie (Atalanta – Italy), Yao Serge N’guessan (AS Nancy – France), Geoffroy Serey Die (FC Bâle – Switzerland), Jean Michael Seri (OGC Nice – France)
Forwards: Wilfried Bony (Stoke City FC – England), Max Gradel (Bournemouth – England), Salomon Kalou (Hertha Berlin – Germany), Jonathan Kodjia (Aston Villa – England), Nicolas Pepe (Angers – France), Giovanni Sio (Stade Renne – France), Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace – England)