World Cup 2010: Ivory Coast
World Cup 2010: IVORY COAST
FIFA ranking: 25
Overall World Cup record: 1-2-0
Coach: Sven-Goran Eriksson
Best performance: First round, 2006
Overview: The Elephants will use the memory of their single-goal losses to Argentina and the Netherlands in 2006 to spur them in 2010, when they again are in a first-round “group of death” along with powers Brazil and Portugal. Chelsea striker Didier Drogba is Africa’s top player and one of the world’s most dangerous forwards, but the late switch in bringing Eriksson aboard as coach might backfire, especially since he wasn’t the country’s or the players’ first choice.
-- Grahame L. Jones