Ivory Coast skipper Didier Drogba says winning the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations title will unite the West African country.
Drogba and company got their Afcon campaign off to a winning but nervy as they beat Togo 2-1 on Tuesday in Rustenburg and as much as he is under no illusions of the difficult task that lie ahead in the tournament, the centre forward says it is vital that the Elephants win the title.
“It would mean a lot for Ivory Coast to win the competition this year because the team has been together for nearly 10 years through difficult moments. We’ve improved and matured as players and as people,” Drogba says. “I think it would be the best moment to win for our nation. For us to look forward, forget the past struggles and to unite the country.”
While snow fails to cool down the game in the European leagues, the South African heat is firing up Africa’s teams as they compete in the biggest continental tournament.
Drogba’s Afcon journey started on a high note with Ivory coast’s 2-1 win over Togo. He has won all major titles at club level and he is hoping to finally bring the cup home for football fans in Ivory Coast.
“For a striker, speed is essential. How fast you run, how fast you are with the ball, how quick you are making decisions – everything has to be quick,” Drogba says. “It all comes down to speed. I’ve been wearing the Mercurial for years and you can see and feel the evolution. With the new Mercurial Vapor IX you get better grip on the grass and can change direction very quickly.”