In 2013, the Africa Cup of Nations switches to odd-numbered years. Which is fine for Ivory Coast. They've spent the past 300+ days waiting, preparing. And they can't wait any longer.
The "elephant" in the room for Ivory Coast? The absence of an Africa Cup of Nations trophy since 1992. The last few tournaments have seen the team come incredibly, wildly close: runners-up in 2006, 4th place in 2008, quarter-finals in 2010, and runners-up in 2012.
Will 2013 be the year? Ivory Coast's team is comprised of a solid generation of players-quite possibly the country's most talented group ever. But they're missing that international accolade, that validation of greatness. Midfielder Yaya Touré is hell-bent on winning the title and leads a team comprised of both older and younger players. All know that this may be their last opportunity to hoist that trophy together…
When they take the pitch against Togo, they will be one game closer to a solidified legacy. We're on the edge of our seats just typing this post, so we'll definitely be on our feet through 90 minutes and extra time. Those 300+ days are up. And we're as ready as Les Éléphants.