The Super Eagles took an early lead with a first-half goal by William Ekong, putting them in contention for a fourth AFCON title. However, the Elephants, buoyed by a fervent home crowd, mounted a spirited comeback.
Frank Kessie levelled the score right after the break with a header from a corner delivered by Simon Adingra. The stage was set for Sebastian Haller to emerge as the hero, firing the late winner in the 81st minute, completing an extraordinary turnaround for Ivory Coast.
Despite trailing after the first half, the Elephants maintained their attacking momentum, with Adingra causing trouble for the Nigerian defence. Haller's crucial goal sparked ecstatic scenes among the home supporters, sealing their third African title and first since eight years ago.
The historic victory marked the end of a resilient journey for Ivory Coast, who faced the brink of elimination in the group stages after a disastrous 4-0 loss to Equatorial Guinea. Interim boss Emerse Fae played a pivotal role in inspiring a spirited fightback, leading the Elephants to their triumphant return to the highest seat of continental football.
The win provided vindication for Fae, who took charge amid a challenging start under Jean-Louis Gasset.