Nigeria and Cote d'Ivoire coaches lay down terms for Cup of Nations glory

Nigeria head coach Jose Peseiro and his Ivorian counterpart Emerse Faé opted for different rallying calls on the eve of the Africa Cup of Nations final between their two sides.

Peseiro urged his players to seize the opportunity for glory at the Alassane Outtara Stadium on Sunday night, while Faé – who was appointed following the abrupt departure of Jean-Louis Gasset – called on his squad to exploit the growing confidence within the camp following their flirtation with elimination from the tournament.

“We’ve had a difficult journey,” said Faé. “We were looking at leaving the competition but we got better after the game against Senegal. Beating Mali with 10 men also gave us confidence.”

The Ivorians will have the vociferous support of most of the 60,000 spectators in the stadium in Abidjan.

But Peseiro insisted the hostile atmosphere would not distract his players.

"We’re looking forward to a full stadium for the final," the 63-year-old Portuguese coach said. "We will look to our sacrifice and our spirit."

"It is not easy to win the Cup of Nations and when you get into the position you must fight to take it," Peseiro continued.

"It will be a tough match but the players must make the most of this occasion, because no one knows when the next opportunity will come around."

Return to form

Nigeria reached the knockout stages in second place after a draw and wins over Cote d'Ivoire and Guinea Bissau in Group A.

Read more on RFI English

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