The Elephants coach says his team need to show the world they are the best on the continent during the forthcoming showpiece
After the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations official draw on Wednesday in Durban, South Africa, that pitted Cote D’Ivoire against Togo, Algeria and Tunisia is Group D, the Elephants’ coach Sabri Lamouchi tried to play down on the robustness of the group which a number of pundits have dubbed “Group of Death”.
The 40-year-old Frenchman told Ivorian state television RTI on Thursday that there should be no fear facing Togo, Algeria and Tunisia in the group stage, although, he said he would have loved to meet those teams later in the tournament rather than beginning with them.
The former Inter and Marseille midfielder said every other team wanted to avoid Cote D’Ivoire before the draw and that he was personally expecting anything good or bad.
“Many back home are scared of our Group D, but it is one of the reasons why we should defend our status as the best team on the continent,” Lamouchi said. “We need to be able to prove our worth on the pitch no matter the team we are to face.
When asked how he would feel playing against Tunisia where his parents hail from, Lamouchi responded saying there would be no emotions but football.
Cote D’Ivoire will open their campaign against regional rivals Togo on January 22 in Rustenburg before confronting Tunisia four days later and Algeria on January 30 in the same city.