FULL TIME – Cote d’Ivoire 1-1 Mali

  • FULL TIME – Cote d’Ivoire 1-1 Mali: The Eagles took an early lead through Sako, but the Elephants were in charge from then on. Kolo Toure hit the bar but it wasn’t until the 87th minute that they finally equalised through Gradel. It’s a second consecutive 1-1 draw for both these sides, which should lead to a brilliant final round of games in Group D!
  • 90′ + 7′
    Yaya Toure delivers it… straight into the arms of Berthe! The keeper releases it and then the final whistle goes!
  • 90′ + 6′
    Kalou receives the ball on the right and throws a couple of stepovers at his marker. He fizzes a cross into the box which Sambou Yatabare puts behind for a corner. One last chance for the Elephants, surely!
  • 90′ + 5′
    There’s still time for a winner, but neither side is showing enough urgency to get forward and find it!
  • 90′ + 4′
    A high ball into the box is controlled by Sambou Yatabare, who follows his touch up with an overhead kick. He manages to get the effort on target, but it is at a comfortable height for Gbohouo to claim.
  • 90′ + 3′
    Stoppage time has been riddled with further interruptions to the play, and there is another now as Tiote goes down. He gets back to his feet quickly but as the medical staff came on he is forced off momentarily by the referee.
  • 90′ + 2′
    SubstitutionMustapha Yatabare Modibo Maiga
  • 90′ + 1′
    A final change from Mali then, as Mustapha Yatabare is replaced by Modibo Maiga.
  • 90′
    There are going to be six minutes of time added on!
  • 88′
    Yellow CardSambou Yatabare
  • 88′
    There’s a yellow card for Sylla now, as tempers flare again following a very robust challenge on Tiote from Sambou Yatabare. The Mali midfielder should have got the booking that was given to Tamboura earlier in the match, so he can consider himself lucky to still be on!
  • 87′
    AssistSerge Aurier
  • 87′
    GoalMax-Alain Gradel
    GOOOOOOAAAAL!! THERE IS THE EQUALISER! It’s another late leveller for the Elephants! Yaya Toure angles a brilliant pass out to the right for Aurier, and the Paris Saint-Germain defender cuts it back for Gradel to send a side-footed effort beyond the keeper.
  • 84′
    SubstitutionWilfried Bony Gadji Tallo
  • 84′
    Although Cote d’Ivoire are chasing the game, Bony has now been withdrawn and his replacement is Gadji Tallo.
  • 83′
    SubstitutionW. Kanon Salomon Kalou
  • 83′
    Yellow CardCheikh Tiote
  • 83′
    Another change for Cote d’Ivoire, as Salomon Kalou comes on in place of Kanon. The Elephants should now switch to a back four.
  • 82′
    The Elephants are giving away far too many cheap free kicks now, and the latest one results in a yellow card for Tiote. That booking will keep him out of their final group match against Cameroon!
  • 80′
    Aurier slaloms into the box from a wide right position but he eventually runs into trouble and loses the ball to the Mali defence. Had he been able to beat one more player then the space for a shot would have opened up!
  • 79′
    CHANCE! The free kick runs all the way out to the right, where Soumba Yatabare picks it up and delivers a cross into the box. Gbohouo fails to hold it but is bailed out by Kanon with Mustapha Yatabare lurking in hope of a simple finish!
  • 78′
    SubstitutionBakary Sako Tongo Hamed Doumbia
  • 78′
    Before the free kick is taken, Kasperczak opts to withdraw Sako and introduce Tongo Doumbia.
  • 77′
    Yellow CardSeydou Keita
  • 77′
    Keita is shown a yellow card for not moving the ball back to where the referee wished for the set-piece to be taken. He’s not happy with that!
  • 76′
    Mustapha Yatabare continues to work hard for his team in attack, and he draws a foul from Bertrand in a wide left position. The Ivorian really didn’t need to make that challenge, his opponent wasn’t going anywhere.
  • 74′
    Sako pushes up on the left and gets to the byline with a burst of pace, but he only has Mustapha Yatabare in support. He drills a cross into the box but fails to find his team-mate, and Cote d’Ivoire collect the loose ball on the opposite flank.
  • 72′
    SubstitutionSoumaila Diakité Germain Berthé
  • 72′
    Finally, Berthe is ready to enter the action and the substitution is made. We can expect a hefty chunk of added time at the end of the match to be based on that stoppage alone!
  • 70′
    Germain Berthe has been warming up for a few minutes on the touchline, but, although Soumbeila Diakite has hobbled off the pitch, the action remains paused as the substitute keeper hasn’t got his kit on yet!
  • 68′
    Well, Soumbeila Diakite is back down on the ground at the next break in play but he is visibly distressed. It looks like his afternoon may come to an early conclusion, and you have to winder how this will affect Mali for the remainder of the game.
  • 66′
    After diving to protect his goal form that effort, Soumbeila Diakite has stayed down and asked for medical attention. He gets some strapping around his upper thigh and returns to his feet to get the game back underway with a goal kick.
  • 64′
    Bony drops a little deeper and picks up the ball 25 yards out from goal. He shifts the ball away from Salif Coulibaly and powers a right-footed shot at goal which takes a deflection on its way wide of the post.
  • 62′
    Mali are awarded a free kick of their own out on the right, but Keita’s delivery flies straight into the arms of Gbohouo for a comfortable claim. Renard’s men are back in possession and the Eagles have to race back to regain their defensive shape.
  • 60′
    Tiene whips the set-piece into the box and Bony attacks it. He is beaten to the header by Mustapha Yatabare and Kolo Toure arrives too late to nod it in at the back post, which he subsequently crashes into. The Elephants fail to capitalise on the second corner either, with the Mali defence heading it to safety again.
  • 59′
    Yellow CardYacouba Sylla
  • 59′
    Tamboura is shown the first yellow card of the afternoon after Aurier is hacked to ground just outside the box on the right wing. The challenge actually came from Sylla, but it is the left-back who has his name taken down by the referee!
  • 57′
    Mali are looking increasingly precarious at the back! Gradel comes under pressure from a very physical challenge and fails to get a shot away from the top of the box. The ball sits up kindy for Yaya Toure but his effort is blocked and goes behind for a corner.
  • 56′
    For clarification on the free kick the referee gave shortly before the break for a headed back-pass, it was the correct decision from the official. The rules state that no trick can be used to pass the ball back to the keeper, which Bertrand did by flicking it up with his foot beforehand. That should’ve earned him a yellow card, though.
  • 55′
    Bony knocks down a high ball into the box for Aurier, but the right-back snatches at it and swerves an effort far off target. Cote d’Ivoire continue to struggle due to what seems like a lack of cohesion in their ranks.
  • 53′
    STAT: Mali’s last win over Cote d’Ivoire came back in May 1995. Since then they have failed to defeat the Elephants in their 10 subsequent meetings.
  • 51′
    JUST WIDE! Aurier continues to cause problems down the right, and this time he picks out Gradel inside the area with a short pass. The substitute clips a square ball to Bony, who bullets a header narrowly outside of the upright!
  • 49′
    Cote d’Ivoire are already being stretched rather thin at the back, with Mali using their width to good effect on the break. They’ve not been able to forge a decent opening as of yet, though.
  • 48′
    Renard seems slightly more composed on the touchline after the interval. He no doubt got all his anger off his chest in the dressing room during the break!
  • 46′
    We’re back underway!
  • HALF TIME – Cote d’Ivoire 0-1 Mali: Sako got the Eagles off to a flyer with a wonderful half-volley in the seventh minute, but the Elephants have been in control since. They’ve dominated possession with a Kolo Toure header that was tipped onto the bar by Soumbeila Diakite being their best chance. There’s been some questionable refereeing, with the decision to award a free kick for a headed back-pass the most controversial! Stay tuned for the second half.
  • 45′ + 2′
    There is the half-time whistle!
  • 45′ + 1′
    We are into the first of two added minutes.
  • 44′
    It looks like it could be a 3-4-3 for the Elephants now, as Gradel has taken his place alongside Bony and Seydou Doumbia.
  • 43′
    Into the wall! Sambou Yatabare rolls the ball back for Sako, but his powerful drive cannons off the wall and drops clear of the box. The Cote d’Ivoire players would have been furious if that had gone in!
  • 42′
    The referee is having some trouble keeping the wall back ahead of the free kick, but it should be taken now…
  • 40′
    An interesting decision from the referee! Bertrand kicks the ball up on the edge of the box and heads it back to his keeper, however the referee deems it to be an illegal back-pass! Mali have a free kick just inside the box despite protests.
  • 39′
    SubstitutionIsmael Diomande Max-Alain Gradel
  • 39′
    Renard makes an early change, withdrawing Diomande and introducing Max Gradel. How will that see Cote d’Ivoire’s formation change?
  • 38′
    Tiene goes in late on Sambou Yatabare and Mali are awarded a free kick inside their own half. He’s struggled this afternoon.
  • 36′
    Bad decision from the officials! Tiene curls a beautiful cross in behind the defence which Seydou Doumbia meets on the penalty spot. He sends his volley wide of the target but the flag is raised for an offside. The CSKA Moscow man was certainly in a legal position, but his finish was poor regardless.
  • 35′
    Cote d’Ivoire have dominated possession since going behind, and that is the closest they’ve come to levelling it. Mali will just be hoping to get to half time with their lead intact.
  • 33′
    OFF THE BAR!! Bony produces a flip-flap as he enters the near side of the box, sending the ball through Wague’s legs. The centre-back stumbles over and trips the striker, but only a corner is awarded! Yaya Toure whips in the set piece and Kolo Toure gets on the end of it, but his header is pushed onto the woodwork by Soumbeila Diakite!
  • 32′
    Sambou Yatabare goes for an ambitious volley from a lofted pass courtesy of Keita who was out on the left. The Mali man gets it on target but that was never going to worry Gbohouo.
  • 31′
    Aurier has been very energetic so far, and this time he provides a much better cutback from the byline. Seydou Doumbia cannot control it and Tiene slips as he attempts to run onto it, meaning the momentum of the attack is completely lost.
  • 30′
    There’s no urgency from the Elephants, and, although they get a number of bodies into the box, Mali are able to deal with a cross from Tiote with ease.
  • 28′
    Kanon are passing horizontally and without pace far too frequently, and thus Kanon has no options to release the ball to when he is closed down by Sambou and Mustapha Yatabare. The Mali duo manage to dispossess the centre-back but are not able to keep the ball in play.
  • 26′
    There’s a break in play here as Mustapha Yatabare has stayed down after an aerial challenge for the ball with Diomande in the build-up to that shot. He gets some treatment and trots off before returning sharpish.
  • 25′
    WIDE! The free kick is cleared by the Mali defence but it’s worked back out to Tiene on the left. His delivery is nodded back into the centre by Bony and Seydou Doumbia attempts an acrobatic volley which falls outside of the upright.
  • 24′
    Mali are pressing quite high, forcing Cote d’Ivoire to try and play the ball up from the back. After nearly giving the ball away they work it out to the left, where Tiene draws a free kick from Drissa Diakite.
  • 22′
    Tiene flights a lovely cross into the box from a deep position on the left. Aurier leaps in front of Keita to get his head on the delivery, sending his headeer over the top of the goal. He was stretching to reach it, which made it difficult for him to keep it down.
  • 21′
    A lovely pass down the right-hand channel from Yaya Toure enables Aurier to burst into the box along the byline. He has Seydou Doumbia in space, waiting for a cut back, but instead fires a cross-cum-shot straight at Soumbeila Diakite.
  • 19′
    Cote d’Ivoire cede possession cheaply inside their own half but Sako’s attempt to thread a pass behind the defence for Mustapha Yatabare is intercepted by Kanon. Renard clearly displeased with what he’s seeing from his team at the moment.
  • 17′
    Bertrand launches a long ball into the area from defence and Seydou Doumbia chases it down. Drissa Diakite and Wague combine to stop him getting on the end of it, ensuring it bounces behind for a goal kick instead.
  • 15′
    Keita wins the ball with a very physical challenge on the near side, but Tiene takes objection to it and chases back to bundle the Roma man over. The referee does award a free kick for that challenge!
  • 13′
    STAT: Mali have lost their last four meetings with the Elephants, including a 1-0 defeat in the 2012 Afcon semi-final.
  • 11′
    Yaya Toure tries to add an attacking injection from Cote d’Ivoire’s midfield but after knocking the ball beyond Sylla he is tripped by the Malian. The referee awards the free kick but he still has a few words for his opponent. Renard’s men fail to make the set-piece count, though.
  • 9′
    The Elephants look for a quick response, with Aurier pushing up on the right and digging a cross out from the byline. Bony gets in front of Salif Coulibaly to get a touch on it but it is deflected behind for a corner off the defender. The set-piece is quickly cleared but Sambou Yatabare has no support in his attempt to break.
  • 7′
    AssistSambou Yatabare
  • 7′
    GoalBakary Sako
    GOOOOOAAAAL!! MALI BRING THE GAME TO LIFE! Tiene is out of position and Sambou Yatabare uses the pace to whip a cross to the back post. Aurier doesn’t follow the run of Sako, who lashes a half-volley into the bottom corner!
  • 6′
    It’s been a rather bitty opening to proceedings, with the referee happy to award free kicks for the tamest of challenges.
  • 4′
    Keita clips a free kick into the box which is flicked on for Sambou Yatabare. The winger challenges Kanon to a header but is deemed to foul the centre-back in his effort to win it, resulting in a free kick to the Elephants.
  • 2′
    Well, it certainly looks like a 3-5-2 for Cote d’Ivoire from the way they’ve shaped up today, with Tiene and Aurier playing as wing-backs.
  • 1′
    We are underway in Malabo!
  • The teams are out and the national anthems are underway, so not much longer to wait until kick off!
  • Looking at the Elephants’ line-up, it could well change to a three-man defence if Kanon took up a central role to allow Tiene to operate as a wing-back. That would put Seydou Doumbia up top alongside Bony, too, which surely wouldn’t be a bad thing. We’ll have to wait until they take to the pitch, though.
  • Mali substitutes: Berthe, Diawara, I. Coulibaly, T. Doumbia, M. Traore, Diarra, O. Coulibaly, Diaby, Konate, Maiga, A. Traore, Samake.
  • Mali (4-3-3): S. Diakite; D. Diakite, Wague, S. Coulibaly, Tamboura; N’Diaye, Sylla, Keita; S. Yatabare, M. Yatabare, Sako.
  • Cote d’Ivoire subs: Barry, Viera, Assale, Die, Tallo, Akpa Akpro, Gradel, L. Traore, Sayouba, Doukoure, Kalou.
  • Cote d’Ivoire (4-3-3): Gbohouo; Aurier, K. Toure, Bertrand, Kanon; Diomande, Y. Toure, Tiote; S. Doumbia, Bony, Tiene.
  • MALI TEAM NEWS: Henryk Kasperczak keeps faith with his starting XI from the previous game, making no changes for their meeting with the Elephants.
  • COTE D’IVOIRE TEAM NEWS: Herve Renard makes three changes from the side he selected to start their meeting with Guinea. Gervinho misses out through suspension, and he is replaced on the left by Siaka Tiene. Serey Die is dropped to the bench so Ismail Diomande comes into the midfield, while Seydou Doumbia takes the spot of Salomon Kalou.
  • The Elephants salvaged a draw from their opening encounter with Guinea, having been reduced to 10 men after going behind. A late equaliser from Seydou Doumbia ensured the early favourites took something from the match. Mali, meanwhile, were denied the a win against Cameroon in their first outing as Sambou Yatabare’s strike was cancelled out late on.