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North Korea vs Ivory Coast – Elephants chase impossible dream

| 24.06.2010

Ivory Coast need a miracle if they are to qualify for the last 16, as they prepare for their final Group G match against North Korea.

They have a vastly inferior goal difference (-2) to both Brazil (+3) and Portugal (+7), and although they are 3/10 favourites to beat North Korea, Ivory Coast’s margin of victory will have to be huge for them to progress.

The Ivory Coast’s best hope is to win by more than three goals against North Korea, and for Portugal to beat Brazil by two goals or more.

And while the former is plausible, the latter seems unlikely. Brazil are strong contenders to win the World Cup and they will be itching to get one over their old rivals Portugal.

Ivory Coast’s other option is to at least match Portugal’s mammoth win against North Korea and hope that Brazil beat Portugal by two goals. A 7-0 Ivory Coast win is 100/1.

Didier Drogba scored a consolatory goal during the Ivory Coast’s 3-1 defeat to Brazil, and the iconic forward is 11/4 to score first against North Korea.

Brazil found it surprisingly difficult to break down the North Korean defence, but Kim Jong-Hun’s side simply unravelled in their crushing 7-0 defeat at the hands of Portugal. Such porous defending will have caught the eye of the Ivorian forwards.

As well as Drogba, Sven Goran Eriksson has at his disposal Chelsea’s Salomon Kalou (5/1 to score first) and Gervais ‘Gervinho’ Kouassi, who has impressed in his two World Cup appearances and is 6/1 to open the scoring.

Can North Korea cause a shock? They are 8/1 to beat Ivory Coast. See the full North Korea vs Ivory Coast market.



Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.