Match Report: Sierra Leone 1 Ivory Coast 5
The Elephants of Ivory Coast were at their devastating best, and got their Cup of Nations 2015 qualifying campaign back on track with an emphatic 5-1 win over Sierra Leone.
Herve Renard gave the nod to AS Monaco forward Lacina Traore upfront in place of the suspended Wilfried Bony, and Sylvain Gbohouo started in goal.
It did not take long for the Ivorians to get going, as Liverpool defender Kolo Toure opened the scoring on his return to the national side in the 7th minute.
Bottom-of-the-group Sierra Leone were in no mood to go down without a fight though, and equalised following a flowing team move. Mustapha Bangura applied the finish with a stunning volley to restore parity on 25 minutes.
The score held till the break, but after the restart the “away” side upped the ante and went ahead through Hertha Berlin forward Salomon Kalou. Max Gradel doubled the advantage, and then CAF African Footballer of the Year nominee Gervinho made it 4-1.
Kalou struck again with a quarter of an hour remaining to seal an impressive victory at the Houphouet-Boigny Stadium.
The result sees Ivory coast move up to second place (albeit having played a game more), one point behind leaders Cameroon, who entertain DR Congo on Saturday.