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Lamouchi lowers expectations

10 June 2014 14:43

Ivory Coast coach Sabri Lamouchi has warned that qualifying from Group C at the FIFA World Cup will be easier said than done.

Lamouchi's team will take on Colombia, Japan and Greece in Brazil, with their opening fixture coming against Alberto Zaccheroni's side on Saturday.

Many see an Ivorian team containing the likes of Yaya Toure, Didier Drogba and Gervinho as favourites to progress to the last 16.

However, the African nation were eliminated in the pool phase at both the 2006 and 2010 World Cups, leading to Lamouchi to call for a sense of perspective when it comes to their chances this time around.

"If you know football, you could say that it's open (and) evenly balanced, but certainly not easy," he told L'Equipe.

"I think that the four teams are level. Each has its style, each has a chance of going through.

"For me, the favourite is Colombia, even if Falcao isn't there. That team has quality in attack. Greece will also be a difficult opponent, because they're tough to play against, very solid defensively."

Despite erring on the side of caution, Lamouchi still retains hope that Ivory Coast can make history by reaching the World Cup knockout rounds for the first time.

"Our ambition is to go through the first round …in two years, I have brought in my ideas, my methods, and I can assure you that we are working well," he added.

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