Oumar Diakité (Ivory Coast striker, after the victory in the CAN final against Nigeria 2-1): “We are caught up in emotions, we can’t… I can’t describe. There, I am just happy, just happy and very proud to be part of this team which achieved this beautiful journey. We were off to a bad start. We showed character. We showed that we were men. And we straightened out… We started badly and then we got things back on track. We finished in style today in front of our audience, in front of our parents. There is only pride after this kind of journey.
Even today, even when we conceded the first goal against Nigeria, we didn’t panic. We continued to play because we played good football. And I think it paid off in the end. Only emotions. I don’t think the Ivorian public had ever felt that way in terms of emotions. At the beginning, we complained about the Ivorian public, saying that they were too calm, that they weren’t contributing, that they weren’t pushing the team. But they showed another image of the Ivorian public. We are very happy with them, we are very proud and we are happy to be Ivorians. »
Max-Alain Gradel (Ivory Coast striker): “It’s crazy, it’s magnificent, it’s incredible. We knew that we could score at any moment. So, there was no need to panic. We had to continue what we were doing well. And we managed to score the two goals we needed to win that match.
When we concede a goal against the run of play while we are dominating, just after the goal, there is the reaction of the public behind it, it puts us straight back into the match and I think that made the difference. And I want to take our hat off to them, because they did the right thing tonight, they supported us, they encouraged us during the difficult times, they pushed us, and in the end, there is got the result. So I just want to dedicate this victory to them.
You know, as a leader, when the boat is sinking, you have to get down on the ground. It was the right thing to do and I’m glad it went well. And that’s how. This is how it happens in Africa. Yes, twice African champion, it’s important to underline that. »
Serge Aurier (Ivory Coast defender): “We are happy to be able to give pleasure to all the Ivorians. It’s clear that it wasn’t won from the start, but today, we’re all proud, we’re all happy. In any case, I hope that we can take advantage of this moment to all reconcile and enjoy again and again and again. It’s true that we have an audience that is demanding, that asks. But, tonight (Sunday), I really ask them to enjoy this moment, to enjoy it, because we know it’s not going to happen again. It might happen in 10, 20, 30, 40 years, we don’t know. So let’s enjoy, enjoy this moment at home. Let’s enjoy. We organized perhaps the best CAN in history. It really proves that we have a quality country.