Tournament favourite, Ivory Coast, with star players Didier Drogba, Salomon Kalou and FC Barcelona’s own Yaya Toure among others, was defeated by Algeria 2-3 in the 2010 African Cup of Nations quarter-finals match last night. It was another epic fight-back of the competition after Mali’s 4-4 draw with host nation, Angola, in the opening match.
The Ivorians, though twice led, failed to hold on to their lead, and was knocked-out of the competition by a 93rd minute extra-time goal by Hamer Bouazza.
With ‘the Elephants’ elimination, the Blaugrana defensive midfielder is expected to be back in Spain within the next few days providing Pep Guardiola with a full complement of players to choose from for the away match against Sporting Gijon on Saturday.
Yaya will now join the other African player returning home early, Malian Seydou Keita, whose national team just missed out on a quarter-final place – by Algeria, on a head-to-head count.
With Sergio Busquets completing his recommended week’s rest, all of Barcelona players are expected to be fit and available for the Catalan’s La Liga second-round opening match.