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Facts and Figures: Cote d’Ivoire defeat Nigeria to win AFCON

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A packed-to-the-rafters Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Abidjan was the perfect setting for Cote d’Iovire to add a third African title in front of their loyal supporters who rallied them to a pole finish as a result of a 2-1 comeback victory.

Below are facts and figures from the final match of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations:

  • For the 12th time in history, the host country have won the CAF Africa Cup of Nations, and the first since Egypt in 2006. For Côte d’Ivoire, this is their third title ever, after 1992 in Senegal and 2015 in Equatorial Guinea.
  • Nigeria have been eliminated in the Africa Cup of Nations final for the fifth time (after 1984, 1988, 1990 and 2000), equalling Ghana for the joint-most a side has finished as the tournament’s runners-up.
  • Emerse Faé is the very first manager to win a CAF Africa Cup of Nations tournament without starting the edition as head coach of his team.
  • Nigeria  only attempted five shots on Sunday, their fewest tally in a Africa Cup of Nations game since Opta collects this data (2010).
  • Nigeria’s William Troost-Ekong is the first defender/full back to score three goals in a same CAF Africa Cup of Nations edition since Opta collects this data (2010).
  • William Troost-Ekong (Nigeria) and Sébastien Haller (Côte d’Ivoire) are the first players to score in both CAF semi-final and final in a same CAF Africa Cup of Nations edition since Gedo with Egypt in 2010.
  • Franck Kessié has scored two goals in his last four CAF Africa Cup of Nations games (1 v Senegal in the last 16, 1 v Nigeria today), after finding the net just once in his first 15 in the tournament. He has scored the very first goal for Côte d’Ivoire in a CAF AFCON final, for their fifth game at this stage.
  • Côte d’Ivoire’s Simon Adingra is the first player to assist twice in a CAF Africa Cup of Nations final in the 21stcentury.
  • At 36 years and 73 days, Côte d’Ivoire’s Max-Alain Gradel became the oldest outfield player to appear in a CAF Africa Cup of Nations final since Opta collects this data (2008) and the second overall behind Egypt’s goalkeeper Essam El Hadary (37 years in 2010 and 44 years in 2017).

-CAF

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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