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Zaha ready for Ivory Coast do-or-die World Cup bow


Abidjan (AFP) – Crystal Palace striker Wilfried Zaha will make his long-awaited debut for Ivory Coast in a do-or-die World Cup qualifier against Morocco on November 11.

The 24-year-old has never played for the African nation which he left with his family when he was just four.

However, Zaha will need to hit the ground running as Ivory Coast have to defeat Morocco in the final qualifying game to ensure a fourth successive World Cup appearance after making the finals in 2006, 2010 and 2014.

“The Elephants” trail Morocco by two points in Group C with just the group winners assured of making the finals in Russia.

Ivory Coast coach Marc Wilmots has also recalled Gervinho, Max-Alain Gradel and Seydou Doumbia after being sidelined by injury.

However, Manchester United defender Eric Bailly will miss the game through suspension.

Squad

Goalkeepers: Sylvain Gbohouo (TP Mazembe/COD), Ali Badra Sangaré (Free State Stars/RSA), Hortalin Blé Zadi (Africa Sports/CIV)

Defenders: Serge Aurier (Tottenham Hotspur/ENG), Wilfried Kanon (Den Haag/NED), Adama Traoré (Goztepe/TUR), Joris Gnagnon (Rennes/FRA), Ghislain Konan (Vitoria Guimaraes/POR), Franck Kessié (AC Milan/ITA), Simon Déli (Slavia Prague/CZE) Mamadou Bagayoko (OH Louvain/BEL), Ismaël Traoré (Angers/FRA)

Midfielders: Cheick Doukouré (Levante/ESP), Geoffroy Serey Dié (Basel/SUI), Seko Fofana (Udinese/ITA), Jean-Philippe Gbamin (Mainz/GER), Habib Maïga (St Etienne/FRA)

Attackers: Maxwel Cornet (Lyon/FRA), Gervinho (Hebei Fortune/CHN), Salomon Kalou (Hertha Berlin/GER), Seydou Doumbia (Sporting Lisbon/POR), Roger Assalé (Young Boys Berne/SUI), Jonathan Kodjia (Aston Villa/ENG), Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace/ENG), Max-Alain Gradel (Toulouse/FRA)

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