Cote d'Ivoire: Ya Konan Out for Ivorians

Photo: Gavin Barker/BackpagePix
Wilfried Bony battles for the ball with Colombia's Cristian Zapata.

Côte d'Ivoire will be without striker Didier Ya Konan when the Elephants face Colombia in Brasilia on Thursday.

The Hanover forward, who helped inspire the comeback against Japan last week after coming off the bench, suffered a knee injury that will keep him out. However Stuttgart defender Arthur Boka is available after returning to training despite limping off with a calf problem against Japan. Both Côte d'Ivoire and Colombia won their opening matches and a win for either should guarantee qualification for the Round of 16.

Ya Konan's absence means there is more chance that Didier Drogba will start but Colombia coach Jose Pekerman has warned it would be a mistake for his players to focus solely on the threat posed by Galatasaray's former Chelsea striker. "We are not playing just against him. Many of their players are at top European clubs," Pekerman told a news conference on Wednesday.

Fredy Guarín, the Inter Milan midfielder, said Colombia are expecting a physical challenge. "They're a very physically strong team who fight for every ball and will rely on their physicality to try to beat us, but with our football, our passing and control of the ball we can have success. We have to be very intelligent, always keep the game under control, don't give the ball away, but above all have confidence in what we're doing."

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2014 Confederation of African Football. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.