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Today in history, Côte d’Ivoire beat Ghana to win first AFCON

Exactly 23 years today, the Elephants emerged champions of Africa.

playBlack Stars without Abedi Pele lose AFCON final to Coted’Ivoire

On 26th January, 1992 Côte d’Ivoire defeated Ghana in the final of the 1992 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) staged in Senegal to win their only continental championship.

It was the 18th edition of the tournament which had 12 countries with each of the four groups comprising three teams.

Ghana drawn in group D piped both Egypt and Zambia by a goal each to make a  date with Congo, whom they edged by a goal to nil in the quarter finals, before overcoming the scare of their West African neighbours Nigeria in the semi finals.

The Ivorians started the tournament by thrashing Algeria by three goals to nothing and settled for a goalless draw with Congo, before piping Zambia in the quarter finals. The Elephants afterwards defeated Cameroon on penalties to set a date with Ghana in the final.

The Black Stars, who were tagged one of the tournament favourites lived to expectation by reaching the final. However, Abedi Pele, the skipper of the team at the time, who was also the African Footballer of the Year in 1991 was handed a second yellow card against Nigeria in the semi finals, hence became eligible to feature in the final.

The absence of the Ghanaian talisman reduced the threat on the Ivorians as the two sides needed the penalty shootouts to find the winner. All 11 players on each side including the goalkeepers were involved and the score line was 10-10. It got to the stage when one player from each team was called to duty to break the deadlock. Ghana’s Tony Baffoe missed his kick; after Aka Kaume had scored the last kick for the Ivorians to enable them win the tie 11-10.

This is their only AFCON title,  despite having made the final in 2006 and 2012 when they lost on both occasions on penalties to Egypt and Zambia respectively.

Ghanaian midfielder Abedi “Pelé” Ayew, who scored three goals, was named the best player of the tournament after his contributions helped Ghana reach the final.

Source: allsports.com.gh

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