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World Cup Updates: Ivory Coast Looks To Progress

Posted on June 14, 2010 by Thomas Rooney

Didier Dogba is hopeful that his fractured elbow will be not keep him out of the World cup.

When Ivory Coast qualified for their first World Cup in 2006, they were given the shortest of straws by being put in a group with Argentina, Holland and Serbia. They finished with two losses and a win over Serbia, but gained much needed top-class experience.

They are going to need that experience they gained playing in that group this year. In what has been given the token ’group of death’ tag, Group G contains Brazil, Portugal and North Korea. With North Korea looking as though they will be the group whipping boys, World Cup Group G Betting suggests that  Brazil and Portugal will be battling Ivory Coast for the top two places in the group.

Many view the Ivory Coast as a team who has underachieved in the past decade. A squad rich with talent have failed to win the African Cup of Nation since 1992, making the final only once since, in which they lost on penalties to Egypt in the 2006. On paper, few teams at this summers World Cup have better squads.

Up front, Chelsea teammates Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou will provide the firepower while Yaya Toure and Didier Zakora provide the metal in midfield. Man City defender Kolo Toure will team up with Arsenal’s Emmanuel Eboue at the back. The only obvious weakness, as with a lot of African nations, is in goal. While keeper Boubacar Barry has experience with 43 caps for his country, he is prone to the occasional whacky decision which will cost his team.

Captain Drogba looks to have overcome the broken arm he received in a friendly with Japan in the run up to the World Cup, meaning new coach Sven-Goran Eriksson will one of world football’s most feared striker. Ivory Coast face Portugal in their opening group match, in what may turn out to be a winner takes all with Brazil clear favourites to top this tricky looking group.

The runners up of Group G, as Group H Betting 2010 World Cup pundits point out, would then probably meet Spain in the next round, so it doesn’t get any easier.

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