Kick-off: 1700, 08/07/2019
Stadium: Suez Stadium
Mali and Ivory Coast both did well in the Africa Cup of Nations group stage and are also hard to split on head-to-head encounters in recent years.
Two of the last three meetings between the Eagles and Les Elephants have ended in stalemate, with the most recent being an October 2017 World Cup qualifier.
Everything points towards another close contest in Suez and 37/20 for a draw at the end of normal time is our initial Mali vs Ivory Coast prediction.
A Look At Mali’s Betting Odds
Mali kicked off their Group E campaign with a convincing 4-1 victory over Mauritania, before drawing 1-1 with Tunisia.
Amadou Haidara’s superb long-range strike then helped secure a 1-0 triumph over Angola, which earned them top spot in the table.
RB Leipzig midfielder Haidara said: “We have a young team, but we have had a long time playing together.”
Mali have been doing well at youth level for some time, with Diadie Samassekou of Red Bull Salzburg and Southampton-bound winger Moussa Djenepo among a promising pool of players.
Porto striker Moussa Marega, Sporting Lisbon forward Abdoulay Diaby and defender Molla Wague, who ended last season on loan at Nottingham Forest, are all proven performers.
The Eagles have netted in nine straight games, so 4/1 for a score draw is tempting from the Mali vs Ivory Coast odds.
A Look At Ivory Coast’s Betting Odds
Ivory Coast had to settle for second place in Group D after losing 1-0 to Morocco, but they beat South Africa by the same scoreline and crushed Namibia 4-1 either side of that setback.
In that last match, former Leeds player Max Gradel fired Les Elephants in front six minutes before half-time after running onto Franck Kessie’s superb lofted through-ball.
Serey Die’s deflected long-range effort, plus late strikes by Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha and substitute Maxwel Cornet completed a confidence-boosting triumph.
The current Ivory Coast squad lacks the star quality of past years, but the likes of Tottenham defender Serge Aurier, Lyon winger Nicolas Pepe and experienced forwards Wilfried Bony and Jonathan Kodjia command respect.
In what should be a hard-fought battle, 27/10 for the scores to be level at half-time and full-time is added to our Mali vs Ivory Coast betting tips.
Angola 0-1 MALI – Haidara
Namibia 1-4 IVORY COAST – Gradel, Die, Zaha, Cornet
Head-to-head: Mali 0-0 Ivory Coast, Ivory Coast 3-1 Mali, Ivory Coast 1-1 Mali
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