The Ivorian government has allocated a budget of around six million euros (3.9 billion CFA francs) for the national team’s African Cup of Nations campaign, official sources said on Monday.
The amount will be used for the “preparation and participation” of the Elephants in the competition scheduled to kickoff from January 14 to February 5 in Gabon.
The current figure represents an increase of more than 600,000 euros (400 million CFA francs) compared to 2015. The Elephants won the last edition of the competition beating Ghana in the finals in Equatorial Guinea.
Manchester United defender Eric Bailly and other teammates began preparatory work in Abu Dhabi yesterday. Frenchman Michel Dussuyer’s side have scheduled two friendly matches, January 8 against Sweden and January 11 against Uganda.
The final list of the 23 players will be named on January 4th ahead of the tournament which will kick off in Gabon ten days later. It means only one player will be dropped from the provisional list of 24 released late last month.
Ivory Coast are locked in Group C along with Togo, the Democratic republic of Congo and Morocco. Despite missing the services of the Toure brothers – Kolo and Yaya announced retirement from international football after 2015. They will also be without captain Yao Gervinho who recently underwent surgery.
The groupings are as follows:
Group A: Gabon, Guinea Bissau, Burkina Faso, Cameroon
Group B: Algeria, Zimbabwe, Tunisia, Senegal
Group C: Ivory Coast, Togo, DR Congo, Morocco
Group D: Ghana, Uganda, Egypt, Mali
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