The Desert Warriors must beat Senegal in Malabo to be sure of qualifying for the quarter-finals from Group C after beating South Africa and then losing to Ghana in their opening two games in Mongomo. Renowned for instilling a culture of tidy passing football during a long association with French club Lorient, Gourcuff was left frustrated by his side's inability to move the ball around in Mongomo.
The heat did not help either, although even the 19.00 (18.00 GMT) kick-off time in Malabo will not completely save the Algerian players from the high humidity of Equatorial Guinea's capital.
"A match at 19.00 here is no worse than a game at 17.00 in Mongomo. As for the state of the pitch, in Mongomo it was very difficult, but here we hope to be able to play our passing game," said Gourcuff. "If you're on the pitch in Mongomo, try to put together three passes. I'm not even sure (Lionel) Messi would manage that."
"You can't compare the World Cup to the Africa Cup of Nations. They are two totally different competitions," said the right-back, who plays for French Ligue 1 outfit Reims. "Nigeria got to the last 16 at the World Cup but didn't qualify here, but we are motivated and in a positive mood and we will try to win."
Algeria will be eliminated if they lose, although they would qualify with a draw as long as South Africa beat Ghana in the other Group C game in Mongomo at the same time. Gourcuff must do without Sporting Lisbon forward Islam Slimani for the match due to a thigh injury.