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IVC coach H. Renard's DR Congo pre-match comments

“This is not the Ivory Coast of the past” – says Elephants coach Renard ahead of DRC game

February 3, 2015 By Mutembei Kevin
Ahead of their AFCON semis clash with DR Congo, Ivory Coast’s head coach was full of confidence that his men could best the Congolese and progress to the finals.

Renard was however not bullish, quickly pointing out that he understood how challenging The Leopards could be. 

“A few weeks ago, we were just the underdogs. But in football, a lot of things happen so fast,” said Renard, IVC’s coach since July 2014.

“When we started this tournament, all the teams were at par. We’re now one of four remaining teams and the best position is No. 1. I’m only interested in winning (the cup), any other thing I won’t be satisfied with.”

The 46-year-old tactician also commented on how much different he thought the 2015 generation of the Ivory Coast team was from the country’s previous squads.

“We now have a different style from the Ivory Coast of the past,” he continued.

“We have some new players, some of whom you only got to know at this competition. But they worked hard during the preparations.”

“We now have a balance of hard workers and talented players. This is perfect for the Ivory Coast.”

The reporters could not resist asking Renard what he thought about the last encounter his men had had against DRC, having lost 4-3 to the Congolese during a qualifying match in Abidjan.

“They are very dangerous offensively and fast on the wings. (Dieumerci) Mbokani is a powerful striker, who is good in the air and keeps the ball,” remarked the Frenchman.

“They have been used to playing together as the base is TP Mazembe and their team spirit is very high.”

Ivory Coast vs Congo would be the first semi final game of AFCON 2015 and the winner of the tie would face either of Ghana or hosts Equatorial Guinea in the finals.

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