AFCON 2023: Drogba backs Côte d’Ivoire for a third title


Didier Drogba, the iconic former captain of Côte d’Ivoire, has thrown his weight behind the national team, tipping them to clinch their third Africa Cup of Nations title as the country gears up to host the continent’s showpiece football event, the TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations Côte d’Ivoire 2023.

Drogba, whose illustrious career includes leading the Elephants to two AFCON finals, believes that the team needs to harness the advantage of playing on home soil to go all the way. “The African Cup of Nations is the celebration of Africa football. Of course, I want Côte d’Ivoire to win. We are going to fight, we are at home, we have to show that we cannot only host the competition but also put in a good performance,” said the revered former Chelsea striker.

Emphasizing the importance of seizing the moment, Drogba highlighted the nation’s responsibility to perform. “Côte d’Ivoire is faced with its responsibilities, it must perform. All the teams that are here deserve to be here, they have their chances so it is up to us to ensure that we respect them but above all to show that we are able to stand up to these teams,” he added.

With the Elephants sitting on three points after two games, the pressure is on as they face a critical match against Equatorial Guinea. A victory is essential for Côte d’Ivoire to secure automatic qualification to the knockout stages. Drogba acknowledged Equatorial Guinea’s rising profile in African football, praising their performance but also warning of the challenge they would face against his countrymen. “It’s going to be the celebration of African football with a team from Equatorial Guinea which progresses every year. We are happy to have them here… but it will be difficult against us,” he asserted.

Beyond the pitch, Drogba seized the opportunity to inspire the next generation, stressing the significance of education alongside sporting aspirations. “You have to dream and give yourself the means to make your dreams come true… I think it is very important to have a good academic background… to have a good educational base which will then allow you to be able to respond and take on all the challenges and challenges of life in general,” he concluded.

With Drogba’s rallying cry, Côte d’Ivoire is not just aiming for victory in the tournament but also setting an example for young athletes everywhere – that dreams are achievable with hard work, dedication, and a solid foundation both on and off the field.

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