34 year old Ivorian international midfielder Sereso Geoffroy Gonzaroua Die ‘Serey Die’ has decided to put an end to his international career with the Elephants of Ivory Coast after the 2019 AFCON.
Born in Facobly in Ivory Coast on November 7, 1984, Serey Die made his debut for the Ivory Coast national football team in a 3–0 home win at the Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny on March 23, 2013, against the Gambia. He made three appearances in the qualifying matches for the 2015 African Cup of Nations and was named in the Herve Renard’s team which won the prestigious competition for a second time. He started all but one game in the tournament, including every game in the knock out stage. The final against Ghana went to penalties and Dié scored his spot kick which helped them win the trophy.
He is one of six players in the current squad playing in the 2019 tournament in Egypt to be part of the 2015 AFCON winning squad. The other five are Wilfried Kanon, Roger Asale, Wilfried Bony, Serge Aurier and Sylvain Gbohou.
The Neuchâtel Xamax defensive midfielder began his career with Volcan Junior in 2001 after leaving the Centre Nationale des Sports de Haut Niveau. He went on to play for CO Korhogo, Stade d’Abidjan, EO Goulette et Kram, ES Setif, FC Sion, VfB Stuttgart, FC Basel before joining Neuchâtel Xamax in 2019.
He won three league titles in Switzerland with FC Basel, two Swiss cups with FC Sion and another one with FC Basel as well as an Arab champions league with ES Setif.
The most treasured of his trophies will be without doubt the 2015 AFCON trophy which they won against Ghana.
Die has made 47 appearances for the Elephants scoring two goals including that screamer against Namibia in the group stage of the 2019 tournament in that 4-1 win for the Elephants. His other goal was in that 2-2 draw against the DRC in the 2017 tournament in Gabon.
At the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, during Ivory Coast’s match against Colombia, Dié was shown crying during the traditional singing of national anthem before the match. It was rumored that his emotional feelings were for his father’s death, he has however made it clear that he did actually think about his father who died in 2004, but that the emotions came from the intensity and excitement he felt while representing his national team.
He was given the responsibility to wear the captain’s arm band after team captain Serge Aurier was injured.
Despite missing the last penalty for Ivory Coast in shootout in their quarter-final loss against Algeria, the highly combative midfielder will be dearly missed by the fans and his teammates of the Elephants of Ivory Coast.