Ivory Coast coach Sabri Lamouchi has resigned after a controversial penalty saw his side eliminated from the 2014 World Cup after losing to Greece 2-1.
The Ivory Coast went into their final pool game knowing that a draw would likely be enough to send them through to the World Cup round of 16, while Greece needed to chase all three points after picking up just one win in their opening two pool matches.
While Greece were still set up in a defensive formation, they took their opportunities to press forward, unlike their previous game with Japan, and they scored their first goal of the 2014 World Cup when Andreas Samaris converted an opportunity set up by Georgios Samaras in the 42nd minute.
The Ivory Coast came back from a one goal deficit to defeat Japan in their opening game of the tournament and they go the equalizer through Wilfried Bony to put themselves within reach of a maiden appearance in the second round of the World Cup.
Greece looked as though they were going to be knocked out at the Group stage for the second World Cup in a row, but referee Carlos Vera awarded the Greeks a penalty in the second minute of injury side.
Replays showed that Giovanni Sio had made little contact with Samaras, but the Greek striker was able to take advantage of the opportunity from the penalty spot to send his side through to the round of 16 for the first time in World Cup history.
Lamouchi was devastated with the way in which his side was eliminated from the World Cup and conceded that resigning was the right thing to do after the Ivory Coast failed to live up to expectations in this tournament or last year’s African Cup Of Nations.
“My contract ended at this World Cup and it won’t be renewed and you can understand why,” Lamouchi said.
“It makes sense given we came up short at the Africa Cup of Nations and at the World Cup.
“I gave it my all for two years but my time with Côte d’Ivoire comes to an end tonight unfortunately.
“I really enjoyed my time with this team and I was very proud to represent this great nation.”
“It was a cruel way to lose, but the Greeks did enough to win.
“We were one minute away from a famous result but the small details are what decide games at this level.
“I’m very disappointed and frustrated.”
Greece will take on Costa Rica in their round of 16 clash at Arena Pernambuco on Monday June 30 and they are available at odds of $2.88, with Ladbrokes.com.au, to qualify for the quarter finals with a victory.