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CAN 2024: Paris Ivorians celebrate after their national team’s third win

On the ground floor of Bellevilloise, the first Parisian cooperative founded in 1877 to provide political and cultural education to the humblest Parisians, Jean Jaures organized political meetings. A century later, this mecca of 20th-century popular culture was swept by an orange wave.e The area where concerts, shows and exhibitions are now organized.

On Sunday, February 11, nearly 450 Ivorian fans celebrated their team’s victory (2-1) against Nigeria in the 34th final.e Africa Cup of Nations (CAN). “What a euphoria Dorsin hailed the final whistle. I have never felt such happiness, such pure joy. “This trophy must stay at home”adds her friend Hairia. “It’s great, it’s special, Jedidiah shuffled, the orange shirt on his shoulders. We just won the best ever CAN and we are making history. This team has come so far. »

They are Ivorian footballers “miracles”In the words of their coach Emerse Faé. What makes their success so beautiful is that there is something irrational about it. Each victory was recorded with pain, often at the end of a suspension. After successfully entering the competition against Guinea-Bissau (2-0) on January 13, the Elephants suffered their first defeat against Nigeria (1-0).

Four days later they suffered a terrible humiliation against Equatorial Guinea (4-0), which caused a footballing earthquake throughout the country and the resignation of their French coach Jean-Louis Gasset. Only with Morocco’s victory over Zambia (1-0) did Cote d’Ivoire finally secure a place in the top third of the group stage and continue the competition.

Supporters of Cote d'Ivoire after their team's victory over Nigeria in the Africa Cup of Nations final in the streets around the Chateau d'Eau metro station in Paris on February 11, 2024.

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In the Round of 16 against Senegal, the reigning champions and easy winners of every match in the first round, the Ivorians appeared unfazed. After leading from the 4the For a minute, they continued, they could not play well and believed in their lucky stars. It never left them: after equalizing from the penalty spot at the end of the match, they destroyed the favorites of the competition in a penalty shootout. With grace and a sense that nothing could stop them, they beat Mali late in the match under high tension as they scored in the 92nd.e minute and another in extra time (122e).

The semi-final against the Democratic Republic of Congo was the most successful match for the Elephants, who won quite logically (1-0), at least without playing to scare themselves, as they did during the final. After falling behind once again, the Ivorians finally prevailed thanks to goals from Frank Kessier (43e) and Sebastian Haller (81e).

“Once again, this team was able to overcome themselves to win, Congratulations to Frank. Once again the elephants were thought to have died and they were resurrected to bring the Grail. It shows how resilient the Ivorians are. “After all the crises that my country went through, it managed to bounce back by organizing the most beautiful CAN in history and winning in an ideal scenario, Cady assures. This is what makes me most proud. »

Supporters before the Ivory Coast-Nigeria match, Africa Cup of Nations final, at La Bellevilloise in Paris, February 11, 2024.

“Disappointment is not ivory”

Sebastien Haller, who missed the opening matches with an ankle injury, scored the winning goal that gave the Ivorians their third continental title, after 1992 and 2015. Last year, the striker also had to put his career on hold to undergo treatment for testicular cancer. “Sebastian Haller is the image of our team. Frank analyzes. He is a ghost: he was in darkness, here he is now in light. »

Throughout this contest, the Elephants supporters found a motto: “Disappointment is not ivory.” From Abidjan to Yamoussoukro and throughout the diaspora, they also vibrated hammer blow The song, which was written by the Ivorian producer Tam Seri, has a crazy beat: “We put, put and put. Hammer blow, hammer blow…”

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In a moving moment of communion, Heath thrilled the crowd at La Bellevilloise at the end of the match. Like an echo, it then spread towards 10e District and Château d’Eau station, where hundreds of fans continued to party late into the night.

Source: Le Monde



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