Ivory Coast defeated Niger 3-0 in a 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualification Group K match at the Stade Général Seyni Kountché in Niamey on Friday evening.
Therefore, the Elephants secured their place in the finals after climbing to the top of the group standings, while the Menas’ hopes of qualifying were ended.
The Elephants launched attacks from the first whistle and they deservedly opened the scoring five minutes before the half-hour mark through their captain, Serge Aurier.
The Tottenham Hotspur full-back beat Niger goalkeeper Daouda Kassaly with a low shot to make it 1-0 to Ivory Coast with what was his third international goal.
The 33-year-old winger hit the back of the net four minutes after the half-hour mark to make it 2-0 to Ivory Coast after the Menas’ defence was exposed.
The score was 2-0 to Ivory Coast at the half-time break.
The Elephants continued where they left off in the first-half and they extended their lead through their towering centre back Wilfried Kanon on the hour-mark.
The Qatar-based defender found the back of the net to hand Ivory Coast a 3-0 lead with influential right-back Aurier providing the assist.
Ibrahim Issa, who is a striker by trade, was then introduced by the Menas as they looked to pull a goal back, but the hosts struggled to penetrate the Elephants’ tight defence.
The visitors did not sit back and defend in the latter stages of the game as coach Patrice Beaumelle introduced highly-rated attacker Wilfried Zaha.
However, the encounter ended in a 3-0 victory in favour of Ivory Coast, who were able to contain Niger in the dying minutes of the match.
Niger (0) 0
Niger: Kassaly, Oumarou, Harouna (Soungole 86′), Boubacar, Moumouni (Darankoum 85′), Diabate, Moussa (Zakari 69′), Hamidou, Maazou (Issa 63′), Moutari, Wonkoye.