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Ivory Coast face Cameroon in Africa Cup of Nations

Herve Renard has defended Yaya Toure's performance levels ahead of the Ivory Coast's Africa Cup of Nations clash with Cameroon.

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Ivory Coast coach Herve Renard fully understands why Yaya Toure sometimes struggles to replicate his club form at international level.

Renard's men face Cameroon in their final Africa Cup of Nations Group D fixture on Wednesday, knowing only a win will guarantee them a place in the last eight, with all four teams currently tied on two points.

The Ivorians would ideally like to have been in a more secure position at this stage of the competition with the wealth of talent at their disposal, but find themselves scrapping for progression in the final round of fixtures following draws against Guinea and Mali.

Many of the country's hopes will be pinned on Toure, but Renard says his powers are limited when not surrounded by his Manchester City team-mates.

"Ivory Coast are not Manchester City," he said. "The potential of the players is not the same.

"At City there are a lot of players able to defend very well and create.

"With us, it is a bit different, which is why we ask him to do a different job, although he was very comfortable because he was used to doing that earlier in his career, especially at Barcelona."

And Renard believes it is the less experienced players who might cause him more of a headache.

"Players like [Yaya] and Kolo [Toure] are not difficult to manage," he added. "You ask them to play somewhere and they do it, because they are thinking about the team.

"Other players who don't have the same experience think they know it all and won't understand."

Cameroon coach Volker Finke has come under pressure of late and could see his position called further into question should the country fail to reach the knockout stages for the first time since 1996.

However, Finke is quick to point out that Cameroon, who have won five of their seven previous AFCON meetings with Ivory Coast, are ranked third in the group.

"Wednesday will be a decisive match because Ivory Coast are in the same situation as us," he said. "I am a bit surprised at the situation in the group, especially when you consider our opponents - we are the third of the four in the FIFA rankings."

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