sport

Lamouchi defends selection

Ivory Coast manager Sabri Lamouchi maintains he is not "obsessed" about Didier Drogba following the 2-1 defeat by Colombia.

The Elephants came from behind to beat Japan in their opening World Cup Group C game on Saturday when Drogba started on the bench.

The former Chelsea striker, who has been troubled by a thigh problem, was again a substitute against Colombia and was introduced just before his side fell behind to James Rodriguez's 64th-minute header.

Juan Quintero added a second for Colombia before Gervinho pulled a goal back, but Lamouchi insisted he always picked the side he felt best equipped to get a result rather than worrying about individuals.

"I am not obsessed with Didier Drogba," the Frenchman said at a press conference.

"If you look at the team, I have seen very interesting things from my players.

"It is just a few details that we missed, and that meant we lost the game."

Lamouchi added: "My players did not deserve to lose, a draw would have been more deserved.

"It was a very experienced Colombian team who waited for us to make mistakes, unfortunately we made some and were hit in a hard way.

"We created some chances and came back to score, so I feel we lost unfairly."

Lamouchi accepts the requirements for his side are clear heading into the showdown with Greece at Fortaleza on June 24.

He said: "We will need to go and fight to get a victory against Greece, it is very simple. I do not see any other way to qualify."