Colombia coach Jose Pekerman believes Ivory Coast are an improved side from the one that made their FIFA World Cup debut in 2006.
Pekerman led Argentina in that tournament, opening with a 2-1 win over an Ivory Coast team that featured Yaya and Kolo Toure and goalscorer Didier Drogba.
Those star names are now accompanied by the likes of Gervinho and Wilfried Bony, who were on target to kick of the Africans' 2014 campaign with a comeback triumph over Japan.
Colombia top Group C having impressively dispatched of Greece 3-0 in their opener, but Pekerman is under no illusions with regards to the challenge his team faces when the two sides meet on Thursday.
"We are against a great opponent and we will have difficulties," he told reporters. "We have to face a very difficult game.
"In 2006, Ivory Coast debuted in the World Cup with lesser-known players. During that year there was a team little known, but a good one.
"Players have come together and joined the team; before it was good with Drogba, the Toure brothers…"
While Ivory Coast's squad has enjoyed time to mature together, Pekerman is also pleased with the strides his own playing group and staff have made.
"Colombia has always had a base of players, with a squad that has already been working for some time," he added.
"(The) team has grown in confidence. There is a bond between coaches and players, making solid team."
Playmaker James Rodriguez capped a fine individual showing with the superb goal against Greece and he wants Colombia to stay true to their possession style and chase victory in the face of a physically imposing opponent.
"Being next to great players makes it easy for you to play," he said.
"We have a tough game. They have good players, you have to be careful to try to win. A point is good but we always go out to win and (on Thursday) we will do the same."
|PSV beaten at home as AC Milan, Everton & Freiburg take narrow leads|
|Rooney keen to focus on football after competitive Everton return|
|Everton 1 Ruzomberok 0: Baines strikes on Rooney´s return|
|CSU Craiova 0 AC Milan 1: Rodriguez off the mark in competitive debut|
|Barton betting ban cut by FA|
|£80m for Coutinho would be a good deal for Liverpool, says Murphy|
|Los Angeles FC hire Bob Bradley for inaugural MLS season|
|Deeney to miss start of Premier League season - Silva|
|Chelsea´s Hector joins Aina on loan at Hull|
|Nainggolan signs new Roma contract to 2021|
|Spalletti unsure if Man United target Perisic will stay|
|Cazorla rejects retirement talk after injury nightmare|
|Galaxy part company with Onalfo, reappoint Schmid|
|Shearer, Seaman & Ferdinand to turn out for Grenfell Tower charity match|
|AC Milan CEO confirms talks with Costa´s agent|
|Pique calls for technology to reduce pressure on referees|
|Verona confirm Cassano exit|
|Buffon: AC Milan will challenge for Scudetto|
|Sanchez to return to Arsenal training amid continued transfer speculation|
|Ancelotti plays down Ribery injury fears|
|I am king, he is Kong - Zlatan apes around|
|Chelsea boss Conte wary of dressing-room ´anarchy´|
|Watford hand goalkeeper Gomes a two-year contract|
|Bilic: Hernandez was West Ham´s top target|
|Kalas agrees new Chelsea contract and returns to Fulham on loan|
|Too soon for a Milan Scudetto challenge, Pirlo claims|
|Bayern Munich 0 Inter 2: Perisic shines as Nerazzurri down Bundesliga champions|
|Milner closing in on Liverpool return|
|Concern for Bayern as Ribery injured in Inter friendly|
|Mendy doubtful for Premier League opener|
|Southgate: England door not closed for Rooney|
|Allegri eyeing Champions League final return|
|Guardiola calls for consistent De Bruyne after Madrid masterclass|
|Loan move looms as Bayern plan to keep Sanches|
|Barca´s Valverde ´wouldn´t want to face´ Man United in Champions League|
|Potential Barcelona target Dybala ´happy´ at Juventus|
|Suspended RFEF president Villar quits UEFA following arrest|
|Zidane wants to keep BBC as Mbappe rumours persist|
|It was not important to Madrid - Guardiola calms buoyant City|
|Motta and PSG players would welcome Neymar ´with open arms´|
|Troisi re-signs with Victory after snubbing Melbourne rivals|
|Manchester City 4 Real Madrid 1: De Bruyne shines as Danilo makes debut|
|Pogba on same level as Messi, Ronaldo and Neymar - Mourinho|
|United States 2 Jamaica 1: Morris strikes late as USA claim Gold Cup|
|Mourinho: Loss to Barcelona good for Man United|
|Valverde: Neymar happy amid PSG speculation|
|Paris Saint-Germain 2 Juventus 3: Marchisio scores second-half brace|
|Philadelphia Union 3 Columbus Crew 0: Sapong leads hosts to win|
|Barcelona 1 Manchester United 0: PSG target Neymar inspires ICC win|
|Marotta: Juventus have made Keita offer, open to Matuidi|
|Conte: I would pick Kane if I had to sign a striker|
|Mourinho hints Ibrahimovic could make Man United return|
|Patrick Kluivert´s nine-year-old son signs Nike deal|
|Fassone: Bayern´s Sanches too expensive for Milan|
|Champions League Review: Van de Beek earns Ajax away goal in Nice tie|
|Celtic 0 Rosenborg 0: Unconvincing hosts fortunate to escape with draw|
|Keeping players against their will is counterproductive - Marotta explains Bonucci exit|
|Serie A fixtures: Potential for AC Milan nightmare October as Bonucci faces pre-Halloween Juve reuni|
|Serie A fixtures: Juventus to face gruelling run-in|
|Serie A fixtures: Inter meet AC Milan in October, Derby d´Italia set for December|
|Mourinho: I had to beg Real Madrid to let me go|
|Chelsea captain Cahill: Terry will be first person I call|
|Serie A fixtures: Juventus face Cagliari in opening round|
|Sarr chooses Rennes over Barcelona|
|Terim leaves Turkey role after brawl|
|Bacca left out of Milan squad amid Marseille rumours|
|Zlatan Ibrahimovic bang on the money in latest Instagram post|
|Barkley will 100 per cent leave Everton - Koeman|
|City can challenge Madrid – Sane|
|Fabinho and Lemar staying at Monaco - Vasilyev|
|Mbappe in talks over new Monaco deal|
|Toure urges Mendy to adapt quickly|
|Inter can forget about Vidal - Ancelotti|
|Perisic to Man Utd dependent on Inter finding valid alternative - Spalletti|
|Guardiola refuses to rule out City rivalling Madrid in Mbappe pursuit|
|Bayern Munich as big if not bigger than Real Madrid - James Rodriguez|
|Real Madrid friends reunited: Zinedine Zidane, Raul and David Beckham meet in LA|
|Lure of Pep made it easy for Danilo to choose Man City over Chelsea|
|Man Utd boss Mourinho says ´dangerous´ fees a threat to football|
|Victory star Rojas set to return to Europe|
|Beckham happy for Madrid coach Zidane|
|Toluca 0 Atletico Madrid 0: LaLiga giants held to dour draw|
|Tottenham 2 Roma 3: Kolarov makes debut in thriller|
|Premier League spending unsustainable – Levy|
|Mourinho: I miss Rooney a lot|
|Instagram post was Pique´s ´gut feeling´ over Neymar future|