Dave Farrar predicts a thrilling Morocco v Ivory Coast, as only one of the giants can continue, while DR Congo can crush Togo...
“Two of the continent's heavyweights meet on Tuesday in what should be the game of the Africa Cup of Nations so far.”
Togo v DR Congo
Live on British Eurosport 2
DR Congo have done us proud so far. Having recommended them at [32.0] in the outright market, it's good to see them trading at half that price, and even though a draw would take them through against Togo, I think that they'll win this game, and the Group.
Junior Kabananga has been one of the stars of the competition so far, turning in two excellent displays, and with DR Congo not yet certain of progress, they'll have to play him, and a strong side around him, here.
Having beaten Morocco and then drawing a thriller against Ivory Coast, they'll have far too much for a Togo side who looked like they'd run out of ideas in their game against Morocco. Emmanuel Adebayor has been immense for them, but his lack of game time is starting to affect him physically, and the likes of Floyd Ayite and Mathieu Dossevi have put so much into the opening two games that they may not have much left.
Togo's problems are compounded by having a really shaky goalkeeper in the shape of Kossi Agassa, and he'll be seriously tested by DR Congo's ability to supply quality from wide areas. I just can't see a 38-year-old Agassa coping with what is going to come his way.
DR Congo remain outsiders to win the tournament, but the wind is now in their sails, and they're more than good enough to seal the Group win with victory in their final match.
Back DR Congo to beat Togo @ [1.98]
Morocco v Ivory Coast
Live on British Eurosport
Two of the continent's heavyweights meet on Tuesday in what should be the game of the Africa Cup of Nations so far. One of them will be going home, and with them both improving significantly after disappointing openers, this should be a match of high quality.
Ivory Coast very nearly snatched a winner against Morocco, with Salomon Kalou being denied late on by the assistant referee. The pre-tournament favourites have found their form just in time, but they have to beat Morocco to go through. A draw puts them out.
Morocco were on the brink of putting a dent in Herve Renard's formidable AFCON coaching record, but having lost to DR Congo and then a goal down against Togo, they too found their mojo and will come into this with confidence high.
Renard is a bit of a "smart alec" coach, and fancies himself tactically, so there's a chance that he will set his team up to draw the game, but that would surely be a mistake. Ivory Coast are deeply flawed defensively, but they have formidable weapons in forward areas, and after Togo stopped them, they scored twice against DR Congo and laid siege to their goal.
Morocco look too big at [3.8] to win this game, but they don't have to win, which goes some way to explaining that price. Ivory Coast are by no means guaranteed victory either, and yet are being priced up as if that's very probable. It isn't.
The likeliest outcome of this game is that it will be a thriller. A goal for either team puts us in that perfect knockout situation, with a goal either way changing the complexion of the Group, and I think it's worth taking the risk, given the attacking talent on view, that there'll be at least four goals.
That's a fairly rare occurrence in the AFCON, but it happened in both of these teams' previous games, and I firmly believe that it will happen again.
Back Over 3.5 goals in Morocco v Ivory Coast @ [4.8]