Ivory Coast held


NYON, June 9- Injured Ivory Coast striker Didier Drogba stayed out of the public eye on Tuesday as his teammates missed a host of chances in a 1-1 World Cup warm-up draw against Swiss second division club Lausanne.

Drogba, who fractured a forearm in a friendly against Japan last Friday, was not seen during the game at Colovray stadium in Nyon, western Switzerland.

The Ivory Coast football federation had signalled more than day ago that the Chelsea player was expected to follow the squad from the touchline here, after an operation in a hospital in Bern on Saturday.

Lausanne went ahead completely against the run of play in the first half to with a low header by defender Guillaume Katz, in one of their only chances in 90 minutes.

Ivory Coast kept the bulk of possession in a slow-paced game the day before the squad is due to fly out to South Africa after a two week training camp in the Swiss Alps.

Coach Sven Goran Eriksson fielded all his remaining strikers in the match in Drogba’s absence.

But the West Africans were defeated by wayward finishing and last ditch blocks despite at least half a dozen clear chances.

Ivory Coast suffered from the lack of a clear pointman until Lille’s Gervinho spared his side some blushes.

Ivorian spokesman Ouattara Hegaud said Monday that no decision has yet been taken on 32-year-old Drogba’s fitness for the World Cup.

Under FIFA rules, a replacement can be drafted in until the day before a team’s first game on June 15 agaonst Portugal.

Ivory Coast will play in Group G, where they will also face Brazil and North Korea.