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Afcon 2019: Ibrahima Traore – Guinea would’ve been too confident with preparation victories

Borussia Monchengladbach and Guinea forward, Ibrahima Traore is keen on taking only positives from the three defeats suffered in their preparatory games – ahead of Saturday’s Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) showdown with Madagascar.

Guinea lost 1-0 to Gambia in their first warm-up game, followed by another defeat to the Benin Republic by the same scoreline, before concluding their preparations for the continental showpiece with a 3-1 defeat to hosts Egypt.

Responding to questions during the pre-match presser, the French-born Guinean international said his side has learned from the losses.

Ibrahima Traore

Ibrahima Traore

“It is true that we made our preparation with three defeats,” the winger is quoted as saying by Foot224.

“It is never optimal that during a preparation [one is] not to be reassured by the results. But I see it more as a lesson that we must all learn from.

“We saw that the commitment to training was different. If perhaps, we had won those games, we would have been too confident. We have also played against teams of different styles. Teams well grouped behind – who project quickly forward, which puts us in difficulty.

“We played against Egypt, a team that circulates the ball very well and is one of the favourites [for the Afcon title].

“It has also allowed us to measure ourselves, to see where we have to work, where our problems are and we know that we must all do more.

“To me, I take it more as a good lesson before the [start of] the competition,” Traore added.

The 31-year-old was part of the Guinean team that made it to the quarter-final of the 2015 edition held in Equatorial Guinea – which was also their most recent appearance in the tournament.

The Alexandria Stadium is the venue for Guinea’s opener against Madagascar on Saturday, before facing Nigeria and Burundi on June 26 and June 30 respectively.

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