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Last Updated: Saturday, 21 January 2006, 13:56 GMT
Morocco 0-1 Ivory Coast
Matthew Kenyon
BBC Sport, Cairo

Didier Drogba celebrates scoring the only goal for Ivory Coast in their African Cup of Nations game against Morocco
Drogba's penalty secured three points for Ivory Coast
A controversial penalty converted by Didier Drogba gave the Ivory Coast a 1-0 win over Morocco in the second Group A game at the African Cup of Nations on Saturday.

The Elephants were awarded the penalty when Walid Regragui was judged to have dragged down Drogba in the 37th minute.

But television replays show that the initial contact was made outside the area.

Drogba scored from the spot with a low shot into the left-hand corner that beat Tarik El-Jarmouni, who dived the right way but was unable to get his hand to the ball.

The match was played out in front of an almost empty Cairo International Stadium - a sharp contrast to the turn out for Egypt's win over Libya on Friday.

Drogba's goal stung the Moroccans into seeking an equaliser but the Ivorian defence, marshalled by Kolo Toure and Emmanuel Eboue, held firm.

The second half saw Youssef Hadji and Maroune Chamakh initiate a series of spirited attacks.

But with Ivorian goalkeeper Jean-Jacques Tizie in fine form, the Moroccans grew increasingly desperate.

The crowd and the man controlling the stadium scoreboard were briefly fooled by a 20-yard strike from Youssef Hadji, which seemed to hit the back of the net - but the ball had actually hit the side netting, to the disappointment of the Moroccan fans.

Apparently satisfied with their slim lead, Ivory Coast coach Henri Michel moved to protect his most important asset, when he withdrew Drogba and replaced him with Arouna Kone of PSV Eindhoven.

Next up for the Ivory Coast are Libya on Tuesday while Morocco will face hosts Egypt on the same day.

The Ivory Coast and Egypt, who beat Libya 3-0 in their opening game, both have three points in Group A.



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