Festivities mark the official grand re-opening of the historic Félix Houphouët-Boigny Stadium in Abidjan this weekend


The historic Félix Houphouët-Boigny re-opened its doors this past weekend – marking a major milestone in the countdown to the TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023.

The newly renovated state-of-the-art Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium in the Ivorian capital, Abidjan, hosted an international friendly between host Cote d’Ivoire and Morocco, which ended 1-1.

The re-opening of the venue was attended by some of the senior government officials, the Local Organising Committee Vice-Chairman and FIF President Idriss Yacine Diallo and CAF officials.

It was a moment that football enthusiasts had been waiting for and they responded in grand style as all roads led to the iconic stadium, where a 24-year-old Didier Drogba made his Les Elephants debut in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in September 2002.

The international friendly was used as the Test match for the venue.

Named after Cote d’Ivoire’s first President, Felix Houphouet Boigny, the stadium will host Group B teams during the TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023 namely, Egypt, Ghana, Cape Verde and Mozambique.

The venue hosted the opening and final matches of the 1984 Africa Cup of Nations staged in Cote d’Ivoire, as well as the maiden edition of the African Nations Championship in 2009.

Thousands of passionate fans clad in the Ivorian colours of orange and white, backed by a section of Moroccans donning their famous red and white strips, filled every corner of the renovated “Felicia” as the oldest stadium in Cote d’Ivoire is fondly referred to.

Renowned musical group, Magic System, famous for their global hit song, ‘Premier Gaou’ treated the fans with a rendition of the official anthem for next year’s tournament together with Egyptian Mohamed Ramadan.

A massive investment from the host country that confirms their readiness to stage a successful tournament, the stadium boasts of a brand-new playing surface, well-designed seating stands, hospitality facilities, improved security features, among others that wowed the ecstatic crowd who sang and danced during their entirety of the historic moment.


CAF Communications