Hosts, Cote d’Ivoire, on Saturday in Abidjan defeated Guinea-Bissau 2-0 in the opening match of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
BRANDPOWER reports that the match was played at the 60,000 capacity Alassane Ouattara stadium in Abidjan.
With the win, Cote D’Ivoire have temporarily shot to the top of Group A, in a dicey pool comprising Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea who square up on Sunday.
In the highly entertaining curtain raiser, Côte d’Ivoire opened scoring in the fourth minute through Seko Fofana.
Jean-Philippe Krasso then scored his team’s second goal in the 58th minute of the game.
The Ivorian squad put in a strong performance from the blast of the whistle, dominating possession against their less fancied opponent.
Following Saturday’s game, the host country will now lock horns with Nigeria on January 18. Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Super Eagles is perfecting strategies to subdue Equatorial Guinea.
Spectacular opening ceremony
The much-anticipated 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) kicked off with a spectacular opening ceremony at the Ebimpé Alassane Ouattara Stadium, Abidjan.
BRANDPOWER reports that the ceremony commenced with a vibrant celebration of African diversity and culture, featuring a wide range of traditional Ivorian dances and music.
Donning colourful attires and accessories, the performers stunned the audience with diverse local dances, moves, beats, and musical instruments.
The stage, thereafter, came alive with the soulful voices of Dadju and Tayc, representing Congolese and Cameroonian origins, respectively. The duo sang in both French and English under African rhythms.
The audience was then treated to enchanting performances by the Ivorian coupé-décalé band from Abidjan, featuring young African artists.
In addition, renowned artists, including the Franco-Ivorian group Magic System, Nigerian sensation Yemi Alade, and Egyptian rapper Mohamed Ramadan sang the infectious rhythm of the AFCON 2023 anthem, “Akwaba.”
The spectacular AFCON 24-nation tournament which will be hosted in six stadiums across five cities, will draw to a close on Feb. 11.