Tuesday Mar 30, 2021. 17:23
Ivory Coast defeated Ethiopia 3-1 in the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualification Group K match at the Stade Olympique Alassane Ouattara in Abidjan on Tuesday afternoon.
As a result, Elephants won Group K having already qualified for the finals last week, while the Walia Ibex secured their spot in for the finals as the runners-up in the qualifying group.
It took just three minutes for the Elephants to take the lead with Serge Aurier continuing his great form for Ivory Coast having grabbed a goal and two assists against Niger on Friday.
The 28-year-old made it three assists in two matches when he set-up Willy Boly, who netted his maiden international goal for Ivory Coast to make it 1-0 to the home side.
The Elephants were soon 2-0 up after they were awarded a penalty which was converted by Franck Kessie to double the 2015 African champions’ lead in the 19th minute.
Ethiopia attacked in numbers as they looked to level matters, but the Walia Ibex attackers were frustrated by the Elephants’ tight defence which was marshalled by Boly.
Ivory Coast were leading 2-0 during the half-time break.
Shemket Gugesa and Mesud Mohammed were both introduced by Ethiopia coach Wubetu Abate in the second-half as Walia Ibex looked to pull one back.
Ethiopia did score with 16 minutes left on the clock and it was their captain Getaneh Kedebe, who hit the back of the net to make it 2-1 and the visitors pushed for their second goal of the match.
However, the Walia Ibex went to sleep at the back and they were punished by Jean Kouassi in the 76th minute as the China-based striker beat Ethiopia goalkeeper Teklemariam Shanko to hand Ivory Coast a 3-1 lead.
The goal sealed Ivory Coast’s 3-1 victory over Ethiopia, who ended their successful qualifying campaign with a defeat.
Ivory Coast (2) 3 (Boly 3′, Kessie 19′, Kouassi 76′)
Ethiopia (0) 1 (Kedebe 74′)
Ivory Coast: Gbohouo, Aurier, Deli, Boly, Kanon (Lago 75′), Sangare, Kessie, Akpa (Serey Die 68′), Kouassi, Zaha (Gradel 68′), Boli (Kodjia 75′).
Ethiopia: Shanko, Yesuf, Baye, Tamene, Tunjo, Tekesete, Dagnachew, Bekele (Mohammed 70′), Gebremichael (Gugesa 70′), Kebede, Nasser.