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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

2023 AFCON Qualifying: Goals from Sangaré and Kessié lift Ivory Coast to victory at Comoros

Ivory Coast moved back into top spot in Group H of 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying after the Elephants defeated Comoros 2-0 in Moroni. A long range blast from Ibrahim Sangaré opened the scoring for Ivory Coast in the first half and Franck Kessié put the 2023 AFCON hosts beyond reach with a second half goal, moving the Ivorian team to ten points from four matches. Comoros, in third placed on three points, must win their final two matches and have results go their way to catch second placed Zambia on nine points.

Despite a vocal home support in Moroni, the Ivorians handled the fixture away from home well and held off a strong Comorian attack. Sangaré opened the scoring in style in the 36th minute when a throw-in from the left wing was flicked towards the center where the PSV Eindhoven midfielder lashed a fierce shot past Comoros goalkeeper Ali Ahamada.

The Ivorians put the result beyond doubt close to the hour mark. Once again an attack down the left wing gave the Elephants a goal when a low cross found the run of Kessié in the center where the FC Barcelona player finished low past Ahamada to once again silence the supporters. The 2023 AFCON hosts, taking part in the qualifying competition for the purpose of playing competitive matches, continue to show strong form under head coach Jean-Louis Gasset.

Highlights from the match are below.