Some local soccer pundits have said Ivory Coast’s 2-1 win over Japan in their opening Group C 2014 World Cup match in the wee hours of yesterday, could inspire other African teams.
Flames legends Yasin Osman and Jack Chamangwana and veteran forward Esau Kanyenda said the win could gee up the other teams to believe in themselves.
“After Cameroon’s 0-1 loss to Mexico, Ivory Coast’s victory was timely in that it could instil confidence in other African teams.
“Generally, it was also good for the continent because it gives us hope that maybe some teams could proceed to the next round,” said Osman.
Chamangwana said judging by the way the Elephants approached the game, it was evident that they wanted nothing short of a win.
“It is always crucial to win the first game as Ivory Coast have done because it gives you extra motivation,” he said.
Kanyenda said while the African teams are fighting their own cause, “even those African teams that did not make it to Brazil are rallying behind them because they are representing the continent and the fact that no African team has ever won the World Cup, let alone qualifying for the semi-finals, makes the bond even stronger.”
The next match for an African team is on today when the Super Eagles of Nigeria face Iran from 9pm while Ghana take on USA at midnight.