Thursday, January 19, 2012

African Cup of Nations: Elephantine pressure on favourites

The Ivorians arrive at the Nations Cup as favourites for the event - but it's a tag they have carried badly in the past few years. For every Nations Cup since they returned to the competition in 2006, football writers have praised the quality of a squad comprising Didier Drogba, the Toure brothers, Didier Zokora and Emmanuel Eboue etc. - one that has been good enough to reach the first two World Cups in the country's history. Yet this talented generation has gone steadily backwards at the Nations Cup: runners-up in 2006 (albeit losing on penalties), semi-finalists in 2008 and quarter-finalists in Angola last time around - so fuelling the fires of those critics who have questioned their ability to gel into a united side.

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