Nigeria vs Ivory Coast LIVE! AFCON final result, match stream, latest reaction and updates today

Nigeria vs Ivory Coast LIVE! AFCON final result, match stream, latest reaction and updates today

Nigeria vs Ivory Coast - LIVE!

Ivory Coast produced a fairytale ending to the most remarkable run at the Africa Cup of Nations as Sebastian Haller’s winner completed a 2-1 comeback win over Nigeria in the final. The hosts lost two of their group-stage matches, sacked their manager and then pulled off a penalty-shootout victory and a 122nd-minute winner on their way to booking an improbable place in the final.

And yet, just under three weeks after they were hammered 4-0 by Equatorial Guinea to end Jean-Louis Gasset’s reign and leave them on the brink of elimination, Ivory Coast served up another memorable night, this time one that sparked wild celebrations in Abidjan. They were very much the better side in the opening 45 minutes, but William Troost-Ekong’s header against the run of play gave Nigeria advantage at the break. The Super Eagles had conceded just two goals on their run to the final and, at the halfway stage, looked destined to grind out another narrow win.

That tally for Nigeria would be doubled though, as Ivory Coast first drew level and then moved in front themselves. Franck Kessie powered home a header of his from a set-piece in the hour mark, and Haller then completed the turnaround with ten minutes remaining as he flicked a brilliant finish into the far corner, after yet more superb work from Simon Adingra. Nigeria pushed for a late equaliser to send the match into extra time, but there was to be no more late drama in a tournament that had served up plenty. Ivory Coast held firm, lifting the AFCON trophy for a third time.

Nigeria vs Ivory Coast latest news

  • Ivory Coast win AFCON on home soil!

  • GOAL! Haller completes turnaround

  • GOAL! Kessie equalises for Ivory Coast

  • HT: Super Eagles hold half-time lead

  • GOAL! Troost-Ekong heads Nigeria in front

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23:19 , Matt Verri

Ivory Coast produced a fairytale ending to a truly remarkable run at the Africa Cup of Nations as Sebastian Haller’s winner completed a 2-1 comeback win over Nigeria in the final.

The hosts lost two of their group-stage matches, sacked their manager, and needed a penalty-shootout victory and then a 122nd-minute winner on their way to booking an improbable place in the AFCON final.

And yet, just under three weeks after they were hammered 4-0 by Equatorial Guinea to end Jean-Louis Gasset’s reign and leave them on the brink of elimination, Ivory Coast served up another memorable night, this time one that sparked wild celebrations in Abidjan. The Elephants, through to knockout stages as the worst of the four third-placed teams to progress, are kings of the continent for the first time since 2015.

Read our full report here!


Troost-Ekong picks up award

22:52 , Matt Verri

William Troost-Ekong has been named the Man of the Competition. He was superb throughout for Nigeria.

No surprise that Emerse Fae picks up the coach award, while Simon Adingra is named best young player.

Time for the awards

22:38 , Matt Verri

Two big goals from Haller to get Ivory Coast to the final and then to lift the AFCON trophy.

But it’s Emilio Nsue who will take home the Golden Boot.

Sign him up...

22:26 , Matt Verri

What a manager!

Going to be difficult not make him the permanent Ivory Coast boss now...

Some turnaround!

22:11 , Matt Verri

Just under three weeks ago, Ivory Coast were beaten 4-0 by Equatorial Guinea.

They sacked their manager, and were seemingly heading for a disastrous group-stage exit.

It’s been a fairly dramatic turnaround since then!

Haller the hero!

22:05 , Matt Verri

What a moment for Ivory Coast, what a moment for Sebastien Haller!

He is the hero for his country - the celebrations are going to last for a long, long time.

FT: Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

22:01 , Matt Verri


They are the champions of Africa, completing the most remarkable of runs. A crazy tournament for the Elephants.

Nigeria led for an hour of the final, but they have fallen just short.


Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:59 , Matt Verri

90+6 mins: Sangare wins a cheap free-kick. Celebrations are starting in the Ivory Coast dugout.

They’re not there yet though...

Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:57 , Matt Verri

90+4 mins: Ivory Coast have numbers forward on the break, they’re happy to slow things down though and win a throw-in.

Hosts just a few minutes away now.

Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:55 , Matt Verri

90+2 mins: Long throw coming in for Nigeria. Aina to take.

Ball bobbles around, Ivory Coast just about hack it away. Desperate defending.

Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:53 , Matt Verri

90 mins: Iheanacho onto his left foot... shot blocked! Constant pressure from Nigeria.

They lose it though, Aina with a cynical foul to stop the counter. Yellow card.

SEVEN minutes added on!

Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:51 , Matt Verri

88 mins: We’re going to have a lot of added-time.

Fofana booked for time-wasting as he’s brought off. Nigeria still have time to equalise.

Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:48 , Matt Verri

85 mins: Super Eagles are piling on the pressure now.

Iheanacho swings in a corner.... straight out of play.

Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast

21:46 , Matt Verri

83 mins: The Super Eagles have got to find a goal in the next ten minutes or so. They’ve got the attacking players on the pitch to do so.

Ball swung in, Troost-Ekong almost playing as a striker now. Ivory Coast clear.

GOAL! Nigeria 1-2 Ivory Coast | Sebastien Haller 81'

21:44 , Matt Verri


Will that be the winner? Adingra, of course, involved, fires the cross to the near post and Haller’s flick finds the far corner.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:42 , Matt Verri

79 mins: Osimhen going to stay on, but Nigeria do make two changes.

Yusuf and Iheanacho are on, with Lookman and Iwobi the players to make way.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:41 , Matt Verri

78 mins: Nasty collision between Osimhen and Fofana.

Looks like Fofana fell awkwardly, right on top of Osimhen’s ankle. Nigeria man looks to have come off worse.

On come the physios.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:40 , Matt Verri

77 mins: Up and running again after a brief cooling break.

With added-time, we’ve probably got just under 20 minutes to go of normal time.

If that’s not enough, we’ll have another 30!

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:38 , Matt Verri

74 mins: Just wide!

Wow, that was not far away at all. Haller has had a quiet match, but Adingra’s header loops up for him and the bicycle kick flies wide.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:35 , Matt Verri

72 mins: Dangerous ball into the Nigeria box, Kessie getting forward on the right.

Nwabali reads it though, off his line and he claims it comfortably.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:33 , Matt Verri

70 mins: Sensible decision, Aurier is coming off. Gradel takes the captain’s armband. Singo on.

Well - Gradel can take that armband straight off. He’s been replaced too, Diakite is brought on.

Gradel was captain for about 12 seconds.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:31 , Matt Verri

68 mins: Nigeria have been much better since that goal. It’s forced them into life.

Lookman skips past Aurier, gets tripped by the right-back. He needs to be very careful, already on a yellow card.

Swung into the middle, Troost-Ekong has a free header... over! Big, big chance.

Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast

21:28 , Matt Verri

65 mins: Well then. The stadium is bouncing, Nigeria have to get themselves going again.

They’ve sat back for a lot of this match - will they be a bit more ambitious now?

GOAL! Nigeria 1-1 Ivory Coast | Franck Kessie 63'

21:25 , Matt Verri


The stadium erupts, Didier Drogba going wild in the stands.

Corner swung in to the back post, Kessie is there and he heads home to equalise. Game. On.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:23 , Matt Verri

60 mins: Here comes Adingra again, bundling his way through the challenges on the left.

Flicks a ball to the back post, no real pace on it and Kessie’s header is straight at the goalkeeper. Fofana wanted that played back to him.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:21 , Matt Verri

58 mins: Adingra is the man for Ivory Coast, he’s causing Aina plenty of issues.

Brighton man plays the ball inside to Seri, tries his luck from distance. Drags the shot well wide.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:19 , Matt Verri

56 mins: First change of the night.

Simon coming on for Nigeria, with Chukwueze the man to make way after a quiet performance.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:16 , Matt Verri

53 mins: Match is paused, with Gradel staying down. He gets some treatment.

Meanwhile, yellow cards for both Aurier and Nwabali, as tempers boil over after that latest decision.

Doesn’t look like VAR will intervene. Wasn’t much contact.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:15 , Matt Verri

52 mins: Gradel down in the box, big penalty appeals!

Referee waves play on, boos ring out around the stadium. VAR will take a look.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:13 , Matt Verri

50 mins: HUGE BLOCK!

Ivory Coast piling the pressure on. Adingra skips past Aina, plays the ball across the face of goal.

Nwabali palms it out, off his line as the ball falls for Gradel. Hammers it at goal, Bassey somehow keeps it out.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:12 , Matt Verri

49 mins: Gradel fouled just outside the box on the right wing. Yet another chance for a dangerous ball to be whipped in.

It’s Gradel to take, Osimhen there in his own six-yard box to clear. Onyeka then completes the job.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

21:10 , Matt Verri

47 mins: Pattern has been set early in the half. Nigeria with ten players back behind the ball, Osimhen waiting on the halfway line.

He does really well as the ball comes up to him, holds it up and wins a foul. Ndicka too keen, shoves Osimhen from behind.

Back underway!

21:07 , Matt Verri

Second-half is up and running!

Nigeria 45 minutes away from AFCON glory...

21:04 , Matt Verri

So often in these AFCON finals, one goal has been enough to win them.

The Super Eagles will back their defence, having only conceded two goals all tournament.

Real challenge now for Ivory Coast to break Nigeria down. Nearly time to find out if they are up to the task.

First-half stats...

20:59 , Matt Verri

Ivory Coast had 66% of the ball in the opening 45 minutes.

Nine shots, three on target. Crucially though, no goal.

Nigeria rarely had sustained periods of possession, but that won’t bother them. Two shots, one on target and that was the goal.

Ruthless showing from the Super Eagles.

Super Eagles in front!

20:56 , Matt Verri

William Troost-Ekong scored against Ivory Coast in the group-stage, and he’s done it again in the final.

Big header, big moment.

HT: Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

20:51 , Matt Verri

The Super Eagles lead at the break!

It was Ivory Coast who had the more dangerous look to them in the early stages, but they did not make the most of them.

Nigeria were clinical when their chance came, Troost-Ekong with the header from a corner.

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

20:48 , Matt Verri

45+1 mins: Concern for Nigeria, with Osimhen down off the ball.

Gets some treatment and he’s going to carry on for now - one to keep an eye on though.

Four minutes added on.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

20:46 , Matt Verri

44 mins: Osimhen is winning everything when Nigeria do go long.

He’s been unfortunate too - shrugs Kossounou off, looks to have worked the space for himself but the referee thinks it was a foul.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

20:44 , Matt Verri

42 mins: Gameplan is clear now for the Super Eagles.

Sit in that solid shape, and break through the likes of Lookman and Osimhen.

Bassey meanwhile does really well to win a header in his own box, as Kessie challenged with him. Took a blow to his head in the process.

Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast

20:42 , Matt Verri

40 mins: Nigeria haven’t been at their best in this match, but they don’t care!

They’ve been ruthless in front of goal and now they have the lead.

The Super Eagles have only conceded two goals all tournament - Ivory Coast have to find a way to make that three. At least.

GOAL! Nigeria 1-0 Ivory Coast | William Troost-Ekong 38'

20:40 , Matt Verri


First corner, first goal.

Flicked on at the near post, Troost-Ekong then too powerful in the air as he heads into the top corner!

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:37 , Matt Verri

36 mins: Osimhen urging his team-mates up the pitch, as Ivory Coast play it back to the centre-backs.

Adingra goes on another dangerous run, throws himself to the ground under a challenge from Ajayi. Nigeria defender unimpressed, so is the referee. Waves play on.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:35 , Matt Verri

33 mins: Cooling break done, we’re back up and running.

Ivory Coast straight on the attack, Adingra is in down the left... big save!

Nwabali does really well to not only save it, but parry the ball away to safety.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:32 , Matt Verri

30 mins: Ball clipped over the top of the Nigeria defence, Nwabali has to rush off his line to get there before Adingra.

Goalless first 30 minutes of this final, but it’s been a good watch. Emotions running high already.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:29 , Matt Verri

28 mins: That’s not going to improve Osimhen’s mood.

The striker too strong for Kessie in the air, wins the header but he’s penalised for a foul. Very harsh.

Peseiro going MENTAL on the touchline, screaming at the fourth official. Yellow card for the Nigeria boss.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:28 , Matt Verri

26 mins: It’s all kicked off between Osimhen and Ndicka!

Long ball forward, the pair challenge in the air and Osimhen goes down holding his head.

Ndicka leans over, tells him what he thinks of that and Osimhen flies up to confront him. The two have to be pulled apart.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:26 , Matt Verri

24 mins: Free-kick for Nigeria, chance for them to put a decent ball into the box.

It’s flicked on by Bassey, Troost-Ekong there at the back post but the whistle goes. Foul on Adingra.

It’s been a tense start to this final, as many expected.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:22 , Matt Verri

21 mins: Nearly disastrous for Nigeria, as Ziadu makes a bit of a mess of a header back to his goalkeeper.

Out for a corner - very nearly plays Gradel in on goal.

From the resulting corner, an acrobatic effort from Gradel finds the side-netting. Half the stadium were celebrating.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:20 , Matt Verri

19 mins: More like it from the Super Eagles, getting bodies forward. Lookman stands a cross up to the back post, headed out as Osimhen waits.

Aurier then slides in on Lookman, winning the throw-in. Pair briefly square up to each other - good battle out on that wing.

Lookman is then dragged down by Gradel as he looks to break, could easily have been a booking.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:18 , Matt Verri

16 mins: Nigeria defending really well, dealing with anything in the air, but the Super Eagles are yet to offer a huge amount in attack.

Osimhen has barely had a touch. Iwobi tries to change that, with a ball down the line, but it’s straight out of play. Thumbs up from Osimhen, appreciating the idea.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:15 , Matt Verri

14 mins: It’s been a fast start from Ivory Coast.

Gradel with an early cross, great ball in and Aina can only put it behind for a corner, as Haller lurks.

Corner cleared out to Fofana, who is 25 yards out as he lines up the shot. Decent strike, but straight at the goalkeeper.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:13 , Matt Verri

11 mins: Eventually it is put into the middle, but Bassey makes up for giving away the free-kick by clearing the ball away.

It’s coming straight back though - Lookman handballs it as he looks to counter.

Take two for Gradel. Again it’s rock solid from Nigeria, Osimhen this time with the header.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:12 , Matt Verri

10 mins: Powerful run from Kessie, too strong for Bassey and the Nigeria man can only bring the midfielder down. Another dangerous set-piece coming up for Ivory Coast.

Bit of a delay, with Kessie needing some treatment after that foul.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:09 , Matt Verri

7 mins: First real chance - Ivory Coast having a good spell.

Ball swung in, Haller gets across his man at the near post and gets a slight touch at the near post... not enough.

It bobbles just wide of the far post.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:08 , Matt Verri

6 mins: Osimhen now being warned by the referee, he’s the latest Nigeria player to charge into a challenge and bring a player down. Super Eagles right up for this, as you’d expect.

They’ll have a corner to defend here though, huge roar from the stands. Bassey unable to keep the ball in play.

It’s Gradel to take, swung into the near post and Iwobi heads it out.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:06 , Matt Verri

4 mins: Haller gets a shove from Bassey, soft foul. Up come the Ivory Coast defenders.

Seri clips the ball into the box, Nigeria deal with it well though and clear the danger.

Comes back in, Haller wins the header this time but Nwabali is off his line to claim.

Nigeria 0-0 Ivory Coast

20:03 , Matt Verri

2 mins: Nigeria straight on the front foot, Chukwueze not far away from playing Osimhen in behind.

Onyeka then a bit too keen to try and win the ball back, dives in and gives away the free-kick.


20:01 , Matt Verri

We’re underway in the AFCON final!

Strap yourselves in - would be no surprise if this match went beyond 90 minutes.

19:58 , Matt Verri

Obviously it’s a crowd dominated by Ivory Coast fans, but there are a good numbers of Nigeria supporters making themselves heard too.

Up to the Super Eagles players to quieten down the home faithful - not an easy task!

Kick-off just a couple of minutes away.

19:56 , Matt Verri

Special atmosphere as the teams walk out, taking a look at the trophy as they walk past.

Time for the anthems!

Here we go!

19:53 , Matt Verri

Players are in the tunnel.

Didier Drogba now out on the pitch, getting the crowd going. He poses with the trophy, must be about 300 photographers surrounding him.

Still the main man wherever he goes.

All friendly ahead of kick-off...

19:48 , Matt Verri

“Good luck,” says Didier Drogba, as he says hello to the Nigeria players in the tunnel.

Not sure he means that...

It's likely to be tight

19:45 , Matt Verri

Not a lot to split these two sides when you look at the head-to-head record.

Nigeria have nine wins. Ivory Coast have nine wins. Ten draws.

The Super Eagles maybe have a slight edge, having beaten Ivory Coast in the group-stage, but this is set to be a very tense night!


Closing ceremony... done!

19:40 , Matt Verri

Kick-off just 20 minutes away now.

We’ve had the closing ceremony inside the stadium. Now just the small matter of the final.

Not long to wait!

Ivory Coast to deliver in front of home fans?

19:34 , Matt Verri

Egypt in 2006 were the last team to lift the AFCON trophy on home soil.

Incredible that Ivory Coast have the chance to do so tonight, considering the mood in the country after that 4-0 group-stage defeat to Equatorial Guinea.

Reminder, the Elephants sneaked three as the worst of the third-placed teams to progress.

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

How Nigeria have reached the final

19:28 , Matt Verri

Unlike Ivory Coast’s run to the final, it hasn’t really been a chaotic few weeks for Nigeria.

They finished second in their group, setting up a tricky last-16 tie against Cameroon.

The Super Eagles eased through that, and then beat Angola 1-0 to book their place in the semi-finals.

South Africa pushed them all the way, but Nigeria held their nerve on penalties to get the job done and keep their AFCON dreams alive.


And so are the hosts...

19:22 , Matt Verri

Bit more of a muted arrival from Ivory Coast.

The stadium is already packed, with just under 40 minutes to go until kick-off. Fair to say this is a night that will define the careers of the Ivory Coast squad.

No pressure...

In the building!

19:14 , Matt Verri

Nigeria have arrived at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium.

Victor Osimhen hanging back, away from the singing and dancing at the front of the group.

Returning stars for both sides

19:09 , Matt Verri

Sanusi is fit for Nigeria and he starts tonight on that left wing.

Iwobi and Onyeka in midfield, Osimhen leads the line, and it’s Chukwueze who comes into the side to start. Simon drops to the bench.

For Ivory Coast, Kossounou and Aurier are straight back in the team after suspension.

Gradel gets the nod to start in the front three, alongside Adingra and Haller.

Ivory Coast team news

19:05 , Matt Verri

Starting XI: Y. Fofana, Aurier, Kossounou, Ndicka, Konan, Seri, Kessie, S. Fofana, Gradel, Adingra, Haller

Subs: Amani, Bamba, Boga, Diakite, Diallo, Diomande, Kouame, Krasso, Pepe, Sangare, Sangare, Singo

Nigeria team news

19:02 , Matt Verri

Starting XI: Nwabali, Ajayi, Troost-Ekong, Bassey, Aina, Onyeka, Iwobi, Sanusi, Chukwueze, Lookman, Osimhen

Subs: Aribo, Awaziem, Iheanacho, Moffi, Musa, Omeruo, Onuachu, Onyedika, Osayi-Samuel, Simon, Uzoho, Yusuf

Osimhen 'completely unselfish' for Super Eagles

18:55 , Matt Verri

Victor Osimhen is fit for Nigeria and expected to lead the line tonight.

He has scored only once in the tournament, in the Super Eagles’ opener against Equatorial Guinea, though he did have one disallowed in the last-four win over South Africa.

Despite the lack of goals, Jose Peseiro is still happy with his main man.

“He doesn’t play like he is the star,” the Nigeria boss said. “He fights for the team and is completely unselfish.

"He knows he is an important player and he gives us the best energy. He has suffered a lot in this tournament with all the attention he receives from the opposing defenders because he knows it is a team game."

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

How Ivory Coast reached the final

18:48 , Matt Verri

It’s been a wild ride!

An opening win over Guinea-Bissau got the hosts off to a good start, but Ivory Coast followed that with a defeat to Nigeria and they were then beaten 4-0 by Equatorial Guinea.

Jean-Louis Gasset was sacked - but the Elephants made it through to the knockout stages as one of the best third-placed teams.

They then beat defending champions Senegal on penalties, before a 122nd-minute winner saw Ivory Coast past Mali in the quarter-finals.

A 1-0 win over DR Congo was relatively boring in comparison, but it booked a place in the AFCON final.

Jose backing Jose!

18:40 , Matt Verri

Jose Mourinho is firmly in the Nigeria camp tonight.

He is close friends with Super Eagles boss Jose Peseiro, so no surprise that Mourinho is hoping for a Nigeria win!

Sanusi pushing to be involved

18:31 , Matt Verri

Nigeria are set to make a late decision on Zaidu Sanusi’s fitness.

The left-back missed the Super Eagles’ semi-final victory over South Africa with a hamstring injury but is potentially in contention to feature tonight.

Nigeria coach Jose Peseiro told reporters: “He was partially involved in Friday training and we will check his condition again tonight before we make a decision.”

Having switched to a 3-4-3 formation midway through the group stage, Nigeria have only conceded two goals all tournament.

Sanusi had been an ever-present until the semi-final, when he was replaced by Bright Osayi-Samuel as Ola Aina switched to the left flank.

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Nervy night ahead?

18:23 , Matt Verri

AFCON finals haven’t always been full of action.

Two years ago, Senegal beat Egypt at the end of 120 goalless minutes. In 2019, it was Algeria who lifted the trophy, edging out Senegal with a 1-0 win.

Since 2004, only one AFCON final has had more than a single goal.

It could be a long night - settle in!

Fae: Both sides evenly matched

18:15 , Matt Verri

Ivory Coast interim coach Emerse Fae was keen to state that Nigeria do not have a psychological edge over his side, despite victory in the group-stage when the two sides met.

Fae is confident that there is very little between the two nations, despite the Super Eagles being favourites.

“The fact that Nigeria had beaten us is a good thing because we know whom we are up against,” Fae insisted.

““The manner in which we prepare for the match with our players is critical. I think that the Super Eagles and ourselves are at the same level.”

“We have a great opportunity, we are 90 minutes away from adding a third star to the Ivorian jersey. The teams are on equal footing, psychologically. As the competition has progressed, the Nigerian team has gained strength.

“We had a very difficult journey at the beginning, but we gained momentum from the round of 16 against Senegal.”

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Stage is set!

18:07 , Matt Verri

All eyes on Abidjan tonight...

Peseiro: Nigeria ready for hostile crowd

17:59 , Matt Verri

Hosts Ivory Coast will have the backing of a raucous crowd in tonight’s final, but Nigeria boss Jose Peseiro insists the Super Eagles will not be intimidated by the occasion.

“I think it is good,” Peseiro insisted.

“The stadium will be full, fantastic atmosphere. One final, my players, me, and all my staff prefer to play in a full stadium with a good atmosphere.

“Even sometimes, they try to shout at us, not the football but it is a good atmosphere to play in the final, we only need to concentrate on what must do on the pitch, our task, job, demand, commitment, sacrifice, spirit, and what we must do in each moment of the game to manage our mental balance.

“It is for our players to put effort when the people around them push for Ivory Coast.”

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Who will end their wait?

17:51 , Matt Verri

These are two of the big-hitters in African football, and both have tasted AFCON success relatively recently.

Nigeria last lifted the trophy in 2013, after beating Burkina Faso in the final, and two years later it was Ivory Coast winning the tournament.

The Elephants edge past Ghana at the end of a marathon penalty shootout, coming out on top 9-8.

Neither have reached a final since their wins - going to be an historic night for one of them!

Last time they met...

17:43 , Matt Verri

These two sides have already faced off in the tournament.

They were in the same group, with Nigeria coming out on top with a 1-0 victory over Ivory Coast on that occasion.

What the Super Eagles would give for more of the same tonight!

Standard Sport prediction

17:35 , Matt Verri

Nigeria were once again not at their best against South Africa, thinking they had wrapped up the game at 2-0 only for the goal to be chalked off and Bafana Bafana to be awarded a penalty for a foul in the build-up that was converted to force extra time.

But they held their nerve thereafter to triumph on penalties and tee up a tantalising clash with resurgent Ivory Coast in the final.

It’s hardly been vintage stuff from them in the knockouts either, but they have their belief back after a rotten loss to Equatorial Guinea and caretaker boss Emerse Fae deserves a lot of credit.

This will likely be a tense and cagey final decided by the odd goal, as was the group contest last month, but it also would not be a surprise to see it go all the way to extra time and penalties.

Nigeria to win, 1-0.

Ivory Coast team news

17:28 , Matt Verri

As for Ivory Coast, Sebastien Haller is now back fit and firing, along with Brighton’s Simon Adingra.

Serge Aurier, Odilon Kossounou and Oumar Diakite will all be back from suspension for the Elephants for the final, meanwhile.

A big decision comes is in the final third, where ex-Arsenal forward Nicolas Pepe and Max Gradel will be competing to join talisman Haller.


Nigeria team news

17:18 , Matt Verri

Victor Osimhen was passed fit to lead Nigeria against South Africa after abdominal discomfort had initially delayed him from travelling with the squad.

Ola Aina, Moses Simon and Calvin Bassey were all a booking away from missing the final, but none of that trio were cautioned against South Africa.

Nigeria boss Jose Peseiro confirmed on Saturday that left-back Zaidu Sanusi was still dealing with a hamstring injury that forced him to miss the semi-finals and will need a late fitness test.


How to watch Nigeria vs Ivory Coast

17:12 , Matt Verri

TV channel: The final will be broadcast live in the UK on BBC Three, Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Ultra HDR.

Live stream: The BBC Sport website, BBC iPlayer and Sky Go app (to subscribers) will offer a live stream service online.

LIVE coverage: Follow all the final action right here with us!

Good evening!

17:05 , Matt Verri

Hello and welcome to Standard Sport’s LIVE coverage of the Africa Cup of Nations final!

It’s Nigeria vs Ivory Coast, facing off to be crowned kings of the continent.

There will plenty of support inside the stadium for hosts Ivory Coast, but the Super Eagles will be backing themselves to spoil the party tonight.

We’ll have all the latest updates, build-up and team news ahead of kick-off, which comes at 8pm GMT from the Alassane Ouattara Stadium.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)