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LIVE: Ivory Coast vs Senegal – CAF AFCON 2023

  • Hosts Ivory Coast face defending champions Senegal in an Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) last-16 clash. Kick-off is at 20:00 GMT.
  • Ivory Coast have squeezed into the knockout phase as one of the best third-place finishers.

Why Senegal are among the favourites again

Defending champions Senegal start the tournament on the heels of favourites Morocco.

Their sole AFCON triumph in 2022, was closely run with penalties required to overcome Egypt following a goalless draw in the final.

The Lions of Teranga were the favourites from Africa to push for the latter stages of the World Cup in Qatar but the loss of Sadio Mane to injury dealt them a crushing blow.

Following a 2-0 defeat by Netherlands in their opening match, they overcame Qatar and Ecuador only to lose 3-0 to England in the first knock-out round.

The emergence of Chelsea’s striker, Nicolas Jackson, signed in the summer from Villareal, is a huge boost to an already impressive ensemble. The 22-year-old has scored seven times in his first 19 appearances for the Blues.

Pape Matar Sarr is expected to be the main man in midfield and, while Edouard Mendy offers great assurance in goal, the formidable presence of Kalidou Koulibaly is the rock on which the strength of the Senegalese spine is built.

The clean sweep of three wins from three in the group stage has fully justified their tag as second only to Morocco in the list of favourites to lift the crown.

Read more: Which teams are favourites to win the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations?

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