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Gradel Sends Elephants Through

2015 African Cup of Nations

Group D

Full Time: Cameroon 0-1 Cote d’Ivoire

Date: 28 January 2015

Venue: Estadio De Malabo

A Max Gradel goal was enough to hand Cote d’Ivoire a spot in the quarterfinals of the 2015 African Cup of Nations after beating Cameroon 1-0 in their final Group D game at the Estadio De Malabo on Wednesday.

The result sees the Elephants finish top of the group with five points, followed by Mali and Guinea each on three points and Cameroon in last spot on two points.

Mali and Guinea will enter a draw tomorrow to see who will progress into the knockout stages of the tournament along with Cote d’Ivoire.

The Elephants started the better of the two sides and came close to opening the scoring in the fifth minute when Wilfried Bony met a right wing cross with his thigh, but he saw his six-yard effort brilliantly saved by the Cameroon keeper.

Joseph Fabrice Ondoua was in action again for Cameroon in the 19th minute, this time flinging himself to his left to tip a Gradel header away from danger.

In the 36th minute Cote d’Ivoire made their pressure tell when Gradel stole the ball off a defender and proceeded to fire a 30-yard thunderbolt into the back of the net, 1-0.

Cameroon tried to find their way back into the game and came close in the dying seconds of the half when Edgar Salli broke into the box, but saw his 16-yard shot skim the wrong side of the crossbar.

The second half was a close-knit affair as both teams kept it tight at the back which resulted in chance son goal being few and far between.

The first real chance of the second half came on the hour mark when Bony unleashed a powerful shot from just inside the box, but saw his effort well-saved by the keeper.

As the game wore on Cameroon pushed numbers forward and came close to an equaliser in the 78th minute when Vincent Aboubakar miscued a shot from close range following a goalmouth scramble.

In the end the Cote d’Ivoire defence held firm and picked up their first win of the tournament to seal their place in the quarterfinals of the competition.

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