Bosnia-Herzegovina vs. Ivory Coast: Score, Report and Post-Match Reaction

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Bosnia-Herzegovina vs. Ivory Coast: Score, Report and Post-Match Reaction
Jeff Curry/Getty Images

Edin Dzeko scored in each half as Bosnia and Herzegovina defeated Ivory Coast 2-1 on Friday evening in an international friendly at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis.

Dzeko, coming off a Premier League title-winning season with Manchester City in England, scored in the 17th and 53rd minutes to secure a confidence-boosting win for the Bosnians ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Ivory Coast created several chances in both halves but failed to beat Bosnian goalkeeper Asmir Begovic until the 90th minute, when substitute Didier Drogba pulled a goal back via a free-kick.

Both teams used Friday's friendly as preparation for the upcoming World Cup.

Having qualified for a first World Cup, Bosnia and Herzegovina were drawn into Group F with Argentina, Iran and Nigeria. Making a third appearance, Ivory Coast will hope to advance to the knockout stages for the first time via Group C, which also features Colombia, Greece and Japan.

Before heading to Brazil, Bosnia and Herzegovina will play Mexico in Chicago on June 3. Ivory Coast will face El Salvador in Frisco, Texas, the following day.

After a lively start to the match from both teams, Bosnia and Herzegovina took the lead in the 17th minute following a defensive miscue by Ivory Coast. Ivory Coast defender Jean-Daniel Akpa Akpro tried unsuccessfully to chest down a long pass toward goalkeeper Sylvain Gbohouo, but instead Edin Visca pounced and shot on target.

Jeff Roberson/Associated Press

Gbohouo managed to keep out Visca's initial effort, but the ball rebounded to Dzeko, who finished into the unguarded net from the edge of the box.

Ivory Coast had a chance to equalise in the 20th minute from a free-kick, but Sio directed his volley straight at Bosnian goalkeeper Begovic.

At the other end, Dzeko came close to scoring Bosnia's second in the 41st minute after running onto Izet Hajrovic's headed pass and beating Gbohouo with a low shot. But Constant Djakpa cleared off the line for Ivory Coast.

Bosnia had two more chances just before half-time. Dzeko blazed over the bar in the 43rd minute, and Visca had a low shot saved two minutes later.

But Bosnia and Dzeko didn't have to wait long for their second goal. In the 53rd minute, Miralem Pjanic picked out Dzeko at the edge of the box, where the Manchester City striker controlled with a fine first touch, turned and volleyed into the bottom corner for a 2-0 lead.

Ivory Coast nearly pulled one back in the 60th minute as Sio sent a looping header on target beyond the reach of Begovic. But with the Bosnian goalkeeper beaten, Emir Spahic headed clear off the line at the back post.

Drogba entered the match for Ivory Coast in the 63rd minute and contributed within eight minutes, forcing Begovic to save a high shot from the right. Sio then forced another save 11 minutes from time after racing onto Droba's angled pass on the right.

Bosnia appeared headed for a clean sheet until Drogba pulled a goal back for Ivory Coast in the 90th minute. After winning a free-kick along the edge of the box, the veteran striker drove his shot past an unsighted Begovic to finish off the scoring.

 

Post-Match Reaction

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