Africa Cup of Nations 2019: Namibia v Ivory Coast - Ivory Coast's Predicted XI, Team News and More
After getting the better of South Africa in their opening encounter with a solitary goal, Ibrahim Kamara's Ivory Coast came up short against Morocco by the same scoreline. With qualification still firmly in their hands, they face a Namibia side who have not won a game all tournament and the Elephants will go into this Group D fixture at the AFCON as firm favorites.
Namibia's chances of qualification are hanging by a thread after losing to South Africa. The Brave Warriors need to match or better South Africa's result and hope other results go their way in order to have a chance of progressing.
Key Match Facts
Namibia need to win by a massive margin and hope for other results to go their way to stand a chance of progressing to the Round of 16.
Ivory Coast can seal qualification to the knockout stage with a victory.
Namibia have failed to score in over 180 minutes of football.
Namibia are without a win in their last 8 AFCON games.
When the two sides met at the AFCON in 1998, Namibia manager Ricardo Mannetti was on target for his country as they lost 4-3.
After a disappointing outing against a brilliant Morocco side, Ivory Coast will look to make amends with a strong showing. Serge Aurier was replaced with 70 minutes on the clock in their previous encounter and while it looked like he could be out for the rest of the tournament, manager Ibrahim Kamara eased such fears and confirmed that his captain would undergo further tests to determine the length of his absence.
Mamadou Bagayoko looks set to deputize at right back and Wilfried Zaha could get his first start of the tournament to provide some much-needed thrust up front. With a place in the Round of 16 up for grabs, the manager won't hesitate to ring the changes to ensure qualification and Wilfred Bony could be drafted into the XI in place of Jonathan Kodjia.
Injuries: Serge Aurier
Aurier's injury means the Elephants will be forced into making a change and Mamadou Bagayoko looks set to fill in at right back, after featuring in the last 20 minutes against Morocco.
Although Max-Alain Gradel has been involved in 2 of the last 3 goals for Ivory Coast at the AFCON, Wilfried Zaha could take his place in the XI. The explosive winger is coming on the back of an outstanding season for Crystal Palace in the Premier League and with qualification at stake, he could be handed his first start of the tournament.
Jonathan Kodjia enjoyed a successful season at club level as Aston Villa achieved promotion to the Premier League but after going goalless for over 180 minutes of football, it's possible that he could lose his place to Wilfred Bony.
Predicted XI - Gbohouo, Bagayoko, Traore, Kanon, Coulibaly, Kessie, Serey Die, Pepe, Seri, Zaha, Bony.