Tens of hundreds of jubilant followers crammed the streets of Abidjan on Monday for the Ivory Coast’s victory parade after the hosts’ exceptional Africa Cup of Nations triumph the evening earlier than.
Simply as in 2015 for his or her final AFCON triumph, the Elephants roamed the streets of the nation’s financial capital.
Sebastien Haller, who scored the decisive objective in Sunday’s 2-1 last win over Nigeria, and the remainder of the squad had been perched on a truck fitted out for the event with a 3 star signal to mark the Ivorians’ third title.
With Monday declared a particular vacation followers massed on bridges and avenues, many ignoring the oppressive warmth to run alongside the victors’ mechanical chariot.
After a festive 4 hour parade, the staff, beneath heavy police escort, arrived on the Felix Houphouët-Boigny stadium.
Sporting ‘African champions’ t-shirts the 2024 AFCON champions did a lap of honour to stands full of followers – all decked out in orange – the nationwide color.
Some gamers had been clearly moved by the welcome accorded them.
“The overwhelming feeling is one in every of satisfaction,” mentioned Junior Djedjess, one of many followers readily available to soak within the nationwide staff’s astonishing run after a horrible group stage.
“With three stars we’ve got now joined the nice African nations,” he added with solely Egypt (seven titles), Cameroon (5) and Ghana (4) boasting higher information within the continental showpiece.
After their lap of honour the gamers stepped on to the pitch, one after the other, with Max-Alain Gradel, the one survivor together with Serge Aurier from the final Ivorian staff to win the title in 2015, presenting the trophy to the gang.
“Ivory Coast, right here is your African cup. Could God bless the Ivory Coast” the 36-year-old captain mentioned earlier than handing the trophy to the Prime Minister Robert Beugre Mambe.
Three weeks in the past nobody not even essentially the most ardent Elephants supporter might have dreamt of today.
They need to have actually been knocked out within the group stage after dropping 4-0 to Equatorial Guinea on January 22, their heaviest ever house defeat.
Their group-stage exhibiting led to the departure of veteran French coach Jean-Louis Gasset, who had been in cost since Could 2022.
He was changed by Emerse Fae, a former Ivorian worldwide who had by no means coached earlier than.
But Fae oversaw an unimaginable turnaround within the staff’s fortunes, because the Ivorians got here from behind to beat holders Senegal within the final 16 and overcame a 1-0 deficit with 10 males to beat Mali within the quarter-finals.
After beating the Democratic Republic of Congo 1-0 within the final 4 they duly accomplished their fairytale run on Sunday evening in opposition to Nigeria.
“After that 4-0 defeat I used to be downhearted however we had been nonetheless in it and a brand new staff was born,” mirrored Junior Djedjess.
The celebrations proceed for the staff on Tuesday when they are going to be acquired by the nation’s president Alassane Ouattara.
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