Ivory Coast will open their Africa Cup of Nations 2017 campaign in group C against Togo at Staded’Oyem on Monday, hoping to bag the first points and ensure a less troubled group stage than 2015.
Ivory Coast have been in fine form through 2016 and they haven’t lost a match since February 2016, coming into the Africa Cup of Nations 2017 as one of the prime favourites to win the competition. They will, of course, battle for the top spot in group C and although we expect a bumpy road to it, we’ll back them to kick off the campaign with a win on Monday at 4/9 with bet365
The Elephants have ended the year with three consecutive draws, though, and they’ll want to lift the team spirits through Sweden and Uganda friendlies just before the tournament. Henri Dussuyer will remember his side’s troubles to secure the next round in the group D back in 2015 through a hard-fought goalless draw to Cameroon on the last Matchday, so he’ll want a more confident display and sending a similar message but much earlier on!
Interestingly, Togo have last played a match in November and come into this matchup on the back of a 2-1 loss to Morocco in Marrakech. They qualified for the competition from Qualifying group A where a thrashing win over Djibouti got them through as the best 2nd placed side, standing two points behind 1st placed Tunisia. We don’t see them as a sitting duck here, but Ivory Coast should be able to outclass and outshine the Sparrow Hawks here.
Nonetheless, Ivory Coast do concede goals even in some very comfortable wins and seeing Togo in a fine goalscoring form recently, we will go for Over 2.5 goals FT here at a good-looking 23/20 with Ladbrokes
. The teams have last met in South Africa (AFCON 2013) and the Elephants secured a 2-1 win – a result which can now be backed at 7/1 with BetVictor
Jonathan Kodjia has been in fine form for Aston Villa recently and he could now be the best value in the goalscoring market. Kodjia has netted nine league goals this term and two in his last three appearances with Lions, so we’ll back him to make an impact by scoring anytime at 7/5 with William Hill