The elephants have returned from their shaky start taming the untamed lions, with the star of Ajax finding the net twice.
Ivory Coast set their hopes on qualifying for the 2022 World Cup on track with a 2-1 win over Cameroon on Monday night.
Sebastien Haller’s first half prop drives the Elephants past the visitors who scored their only goal through Nicolas Ngamaleu.
On the way to the meeting in Abidgan’s Stade Olympique Alassane Ouattara, the men of Patrice Beaumelle settled for a 0-0 draw against Mozambique, while the host of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations silenced Malawi 2-0 in Yaounde.
After a difficult start by both sides, it was the host who took a 20-minute lead through Haller’s penalty kick.
Jean-Michel Seri’s free kick outside the penalty area was stopped by the hands of Vincent Aboubakar, who urged referee Mustapha Ghorbal to point to the spot.
The Ajax forward took the ensuing kick and sent goalkeeper Devis Epassy in the wrong direction.
Ivory Coast doubled their advantage nine minutes later, when Jean Kouassi started for Haller to complete his doubles.
The team of Toni Conceicao, unwilling to go off without a fight, started the second half like a house on fire, and their perseverance paid off after they were awarded a penalty kick after Karl Toko Ekambi was found in the area by Eric Bailly.
Ngamaleu stepped up and made no mistakes to send the ball past the goalkeeper.
With no goals in the remaining minutes of the game, the Ivorians selected all three points to lead Group D by four points from two games.
Elsewhere, Liberia returned from their 2-0 defeat to Nigeria in Lagos to secure a away win against the Central African Republic.
Kpah Sherman was the hero of the Lone Star after scoring the winning goal with just four minutes from full time.
Despite their result against Francois Zahoui’s Wild Beasts, Peter Butler’s men occupy second place in Group C, while the Super Eagles try to reach Cape Verde on Tuesday.
At the Stade de l’Amitie, Benin Republic drew 1-1 with DR Congo.
The visitors took the lead 12 minutes into the game by 1 to 0, as Dieumerci Mbokani elegantly received a long range pass through the middle, finishing off with a half-volley shot just below the bar.
Thirteen minutes before the break, the Squirrels restored equality when Jordan Adeoti sent Delvyn Moremus’ cross into the net.
Benin had the opportunity to take the lead four minutes before the break, but Steve Mounie’s header was hit by the goalkeeper.
In other matches, Mali were tied 0-0 by Uganda with a 10-man Niger Republic defeating Djibouti 4-2 from home.