The Africa Cup of Nations Côte d’Ivoire 2023 round of 16 games will start with Angola and Namibia facing each other at the Stade de la Paix in Bouake on Saturday, January 27.
Angola managed to top Group D with 7 points. They recorded wins over Mauritania and Burkina Faso and a draw with Algeria.
Namibia on the other hand recorded their first and only win in the history of the AFCON, the victory played a vital role in their qualification to the knockout phase.
Stade de la Paix is a familiar ground for Angola. They played two of their group games at the venue in Bouake.
With two Man of the Match awards, Deon Hotto has been the key man for the Brave Warriors.
Gelson Dala who featured in CAF’s team of the group stage has scored two goals so far for Angola. He will be the main problem for the Namibian defense to deal with.
Both coaches are excited about their qualification. They still expect their teams to show up for the round of 16 game and hopefully write more history in the tournament.
Pedro Gonçalves – Angola head coach
It has been a historic moment for us and we have a bigger game tomorrow, perhaps the biggest game in the last 14 years of the Angolan national team.
Our focus is to be on the pitch and deliver and in the end beat Namibia.
For sure, it will be very tough but I have confidence tomorrow everybody will do a great job.
Namibia is a very powerful team, they are very brave. We need to be considerate in our passing. We have to be balance because if we lose our balance, Namibia can be dangerous for us.
Collin Benjamin – Namibia head coach
We have some good technical players with big hearts and there is the signature of the coach, there is some players who have been with the team since 2019, and there is continuity and security. We are a very good team, our boys are happy to be here and there is more fun. It’s the determination. it’s ambition, it’s mentality, these boys want to succeed and they understand everything about the team. We are aware of what to do, it is very important to have a stable defense,
We want to be part of the best 16 teams in Africa and definitely we are among the best 16, it is a motivation in itself. I don’t remember if Namibia will go into any game with the odds favoring us, it will always go against us.
I agree that there is no small team left in the tournament anymore. Our coaches are educated to know that players are playing at good levels, and they are hungry.
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