Colombia will play the Ivory Coast on Thursday in the first of three games today at the World Cup 2014 tournament in Brazil. This Group C clash takes place between the two teams who managed to gain three points from their opening games last week. Both will know that a win here today would all but secure their spot in the Last 16. The game is scheduled to start at 12 p.m. ET and can be watched on TV on the ESPN network. The game is also available to watch online through free live stream (details below).
(Photo: Reuters/Yves Herman)
Ivory Coast's Gervinho (L) celebrates with teammate Didier Drogba after scoring a goal during their 2014 World Cup Group C soccer match against Japan at the Pernambuco arena in Recife June 14, 2014.
Colombia gained a comfortable 3-0 win in their opening game against Greece, and they are unlikely to change their starting line up from that team.
Meanwhile, the Ivory Coast will look to build on their 2-1 victory against Japan in their opening encounter last week. That win should not be underplayed, as Japan have a strong side this year and the African team did well to navigate their way past a tough opponent.
Ivory Coast coach Sabri Lamouchi will have some tough decisions to make, and must decide whether to recall captain and record goal-scorer Didier Drogba. However, to do so he would have to drop striker Wilfried Bony, which would be difficult to do seeing as he scored in the win over Japan. That means that the Ivory Coast boss may even decide to change up his formation to accommodate his star striker.
Colombia have been preparing for this game for some time. They played two of their three World Cup warm-up games against African opposition, perhaps knowing how important this game against the Ivory Coast would be. However, they only managed to draw against Senegal and Tunisia in those games, and defensively they looked vulnerable. Ivory Coast arguably have a strong front line than either of those two teams, so they could cause them significant problems in today's big Group C clash.
Colombia against Ivory Coast will kick off at 12 p.m. ET and can be watched on TV on the ESPN network or online through free live stream by clicking here