Ivory Coast wins Africa Cup of Nations

Ivory Coast and Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure described winning the Africa Cup of Nations as “unbelievable” after The Elephants beat Ghana in a dramatic penalty shootout.Yaya-ToureGoalkeeper Boubacar Barry scored the decisive spot-kick to seal a 9-8 win on penalties after Sunday’s final had ended goalless after extra time.

Toure, who won the Premier League with City last season, said: “When you win with your club, it’s quite amazing.With your country, it’s unbelievable.”Ivory Coast’s only other Africa Cup of Nations success was in 1992, when they also played Ghana in the final and beat them on penalties.

That year, Ivory Coast triumphed 11-10 after a goalless draw, but Barry’s heroics prevented as many spot kicks being needed this time.

With the shootout in sudden death, Barry first saved Ghana keeper Brimah Razak’s effort before firing in the winner at Estadio de Bata in Equatorial Guinea.

It cemented a historic achievement for Herve Renard, who became the first coach to win two Africa Cup of Nations with different countries, following Zambia’s success in 2012.

“Without the manager we would have won nothing,” Toure, captain of Ivory Coast, added. “He made things difficult for me. He told me if I didn’t run he’d kick me out. He’s fantastic.”

Defeat for Ghana coach Avram Grant revived memories of the 2008 Champions League final when his Chelsea side lost 6-5 on penalties to Manchester United, with John Terry slipping and hitting the post when he struck the ball.Asked if he was cursed, Grant said: “I don’t believe in those kind of things.

“We did practice penalties on the day before the match, but it is not the same as when you take them in front of spectators.
“Both sides had 11 kicks which meant it went down to the goalkeepers.”-Africa Metro

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