The Ivory Coast reached the final of the African Cup of Nations with a 1-0 win over Mali on Wednesday night.
Cheick Tiote – reaches final of African Cup of Nations
The scorer of the only goal of the game was Arsenal’s Gervinho, who scored after 45 minutes and he was a target of Newcastle last summer, before he eventually joined the London club.
Gervinho collected the ball on the halfway line just before half time, and surged down the left wing before cutting inside and scoring a terrific goal, as he brilliantly fired the ball into the far bottom corner of of the net, giving Mali goalkeeper Diakite no chance.
The Ivory Coast seemed content with their lead in the second half, and tried to slow the game down, as they hung on to reach the final.
The Ivorians will now face Zambia in the final on Sunday at the Stade d’Angondjé, Libreville, after Zambia beat Ghana 1-0 last night in the later game at the Estadio de Bata, in Bata.
And after missing the previous two games as he sat on the bench, Newcastle midfield star Cheick Tiote played the whole game last night in the Stade d’Angondjé, Libreville – although he picked up a yellow after 83 minutes for a tackle from behind.
It’s interesting that Cheick is wearing the number 9 for the Ivorians in the tournament.
The Ivory Coast have now won all their games, and have yet to concede a goal in the tournament after playing five games, and they beat Equatorial Guinea, one of the two host countries, by a score of 3-0 in the quarter finals.
Other Premier league players who started for the Ivorians last night were the Toure brothers of Manchester City – Yaya and Kolo, Salomon Kalou and Didier Drogba of Chelsea – Drogba was the captain – and Arsenal’s Gervinho.