Salomon Kalou of Cote D'Ivoire in action during the Nelson Mandela Challenge match between South Africa and Ivory Coast at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. Ivory Coast plays Angola in the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations on January 30, 2012. (Photo by Richard Huggard/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Group B of the Africa Cup of Nations concludes on Monday, with Sudan needing a miracle to qualify and Cote D'Ivoire needing just a draw to finish top.
Cote D'Ivoire are already through to the knockout stages of the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, but they have plenty of motivation to bring their best against Angola on the final day of Group B play. The winner of Group B will face a virtual road game, but a team inferior in talent in the quarterfinals against Equatorial Guinea. The second placed team will face a very good Zambia side, whose forward pairing of Emmanuel Mayuka and Christopher Katongo is red hot.
Angola currently sits on four points in second place, three points ahead of third-placed Sudan. Burkina Faso has no points and has already been eliminated. Because a draw in Monday's Ivory Coast - Angola match would secure first place for Les Elephants and a quarterfinal spot for Angola, a handshake draw is certainly not out of the question. Cote D'Ivoire will want to carry momentum into the quarterfinals, however, while Angola have a chance to win the group with a victory.
Sudan need a miracle to go through. Though they pulled off a surprise draw against Angola and Burkina Faso have no points, they are underdogs in their final group match. Les Etalons have some top-drawer Ligue 1 talent and will be favored to at least get a point from Sudan, ending their qualification hopes.
To finish in second place, Sudan need a win and an Angola loss, while making up three goals in the process. Even if they win and Angola lose, they will only progress if either they or Cote D'Ivoire wins by multiple goals.
Cote D'Ivoire vs. Angola - 1:00 p.m. ET, Monday
Sudan vs. Burkina Faso - 1:00 p.m. ET, Monday