Kolo Toure plans to strain every sinew in his efforts to sign off from international football by lifting the Africa Cup of Nations next month.

The Liverpool defender is currently with the Ivory Coast in Equatorial Guinea, competing in what will be his final tournament with his country.

Their campaign started with a stutter on Tuesday, requiring a late equaliser with 10 men to salvage a 1-1 Group D draw with Guinea in Malabo.

"After the game we played against Guinea, it was tough," Toure told BBC Sport. "We know that we have to improve the way we play, because we didn't play very well.

"But, at the end of the day, we are really happy because we came out with a draw, which keeps us in the fight to get out of the group stage.

"When we play, we really want to win games. Sometimes we get too emotional and we don't perform; we don't play our game or enjoy playing. That's what we need to do.

"We need to enjoy playing together and fighting for each other. It's up to us. We have to play as a team and work as a team.

"If the result comes, great; as long as you give everything on the day and fight for each other, that's the most important thing.

"We need to think about our performance, not think about what people say. It's normal that people will criticise us if we don't do well, because we have top players."

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The Reds' No.4 and his compatriots will have the opportunity to immediately do just that when they take to the field against Mali this evening.

Victory would strengthen the Ivorians' chances of progressing to the knockout stages and, ultimately, hoisting aloft the continental trophy on February 8.

For Toure, the quest is laced with personal ambitions too. The 33-year-old is going to give everything he has to bid farewell with a genuine flourish.

He continued: "I want to do my best. This is my last Africa Cup of Nations, because it's time to think about the future.

"I really want to help this team, I really want to win this trophy for my country - and for myself. As a competitor, when you win a trophy it is very good.

"But when you win a trophy for your country it means so much. It is not about the money or things like that. I will fight until the end and see if I can grab this trophy.

"It's a tournament that is different from any other tournament. There is a lot of competition and a lot of fight; conditions are not fantastic, the pitches are not fantastic and the weather is very hot.

"Everything you want in the competition is very hard. So when you win it, you feel such pride, because everything is very hard. For us, to be able to win it would mean a lot."