Didier Drogba’s job as a substitute jumpstarted the Ivory Coast to a 2-1 come-from-behind win over Japan in its World Cup opener, and head coach Sabri Lamouchi won’t be changing his M.O. in the follow-up clash.
Ivory Coast and Colombia clash for Group C supremacy at Noon ET.
Ivory Coast – Barry; Aurier, Bamba, Boka, Zokora; Tiote, Yaya Toure, Die, Gradel; Gervinho, Wilfried Bony
Colombia -Ospina; Armero, Zapata, Yepes (c), Zúñiga; Aguilar, Sánchez, James, Cuadrado, Ibarbo; Teo.
1. Why not start Drogba? Yes, he’s 36 and it’s hot. But he also was the spark plug of a performance that was missing finish before his arrival immediately changed things. What’s the scoop, Sabri?
“I’m in charge of a group and not just of Drogba. I am in charge of the whole team,” Lamouchi said.
“He knows how important he is to the team and what his role is for Cote d’Ivoire. Obviously he’s disappointed if he’s not playing, but his attitude in training shows his dedication to the team.”
2. Can Colombia keep the floodgates open after rolling through stingy Greece? Head coach Jose Pekerman sounds wary of his opponents:
“We’re going to play very experienced opponents, a true World Cup rival who have come to win, who will create difficulties for us and for that reason it will be a tough match,” said Pekerman.
“They’re going to make life very uncomfortable for us.”
Expectation: Fast-paced, end-to-end action with plenty of theatrics.
One blogger’s prediction: A 2-2 draw that suits the neutrals.