In the aftermath of their 1-0 shocking defeat to Equatorial Guinea in the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations, Algeria head coach Djamel Belmadi has asserted his side will not back down and will push to stay in the tournament.
The defending champions are yet to win nor score a goal at this year’s tourney, with Sunday’s game at the Japoma Stadium their second thus far.
They drew 0-0 with underdogs Sierra Leone in their first encounter a week ago in what was an underwhelming match as well for the Desert Warriors.
However, Belmadi has remained defiant they will do all it takes to win their last group game against fellow giants Ivory Coast and stay in Cameroon longer.
“Football is not always about rational reasons but let’s be sure, we will fight to stay in this competition. It will be against a great team of Côte d’Ivoire which is made up of players playing in the biggest leagues, but we shall fight,” he asserted.
He nonetheless acknowledged the fact that his team is far from producing what they are capable of, ruing missed chances too.
“It’s not the expected result and yet we did everything, we got several chances but the ball did not go in. We are in a situation of failure, it is a lean moment.”
Belmadi did not fail to pay tribute to yesterday’s opponents, praising their spirit on the evening.
“Regarding the opponent, Equatorial Guinea, they defended with a lot of desire, determination and we couldn’t find the fault, it’s a situation of failure.”
Algeria, who had gone 35 games unbeaten, lie rock-bottom in Group E with just a single point and can not wait for their bout against the Elephants on January 20 to see if they will make it to the knockout phase.