Nigeria vs Ivory Coast Possible Starting Lineups for AFCON 2023 Final

Ivory Coast vs Guinea-Bissau

In the midst of a chaotic and entertaining 2024 Africa Cup of Nations tournament, two long-time CAF powerhouses became finalists with Nigeria and Ivory Coast 90 minutes away from returning to continental glory.

Ivory Coast enjoyed a glorious decade, reaching the AFCON semi-finals four times between 2006 and 2015, including three final appearances and one title. They have fallen on hard times since then, failing to qualify for three consecutive AFCON tournaments and missing out on two World Cups.

As the hosts, the Elephants were close to utter disaster, inches away from a group stage exit, leading to the early sacking of their head coach. They would be able to qualify for the knockout stage with outside help and interim head coach Emerse Fae made the most of their new life.

Nigeria reflects this recent journey as one of Africa’s most recognized football strongholds, but with only one AFCON berth since their last title in 2013. The Super Eagles have also failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup, but could lay the foundations for a revival with a title here.

Team news

Nigeria head coach Jose Peseiro expressed no concerns about a fresh injury after their semi-final penalty shoot-out victory over South Africa.

Ademola Lookman could be a prospect for the Super Eagles after an impressive cameo from the bench in the previous phase.

Emerse Faé have defensive pair Odilon Kossounou and Oumar Niakhate back from suspension with Nottingham Forest star Ibrahima Sangare set to start.

Nigeria (3-4-3): 23.

Stanley Nwabali (GK) — 21. Calvin Bassey, 6. Semi Ajayi, 5. William Troost-Ekong — 2. Ola Aina, 17, Alex Iwobi, 8. Frank Onyeka, 11. Samuel Chukwueze — 15. Moses Simon, 9. Victor Osimhen, 18. Ademola Lookman.

Ivory Coast (4-3-3):

1. Yahia Fofana (GK) — 5. Wilfried Singo, 12. Willy Boly, 21. Evan Ndicka, 3. Ghislain Konan — 8. Franck Kessie, 6. Seko Fofana, 18. Ibrahim Sangare — 13. Jeremie Boga, 22. Sebastien Haller, 24. Simon Adingra.

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