AFCON 2015 Country Profile: Equatorial Guinea

With the 30th edition of the African Cup of Nations set to get under way on Saturday (17th January 2015), The Grand Stand View Daily has compiled profiles of the various participating nations, to enusre that you, the fanatic, are a well informed viewer of the fixtures. Naturally, the first profile is that of the host nation, Equatorial Guinea.

Association Emblem             National Flag

Association Crest Sourced: Wikipedia

National flag sourced: Heraldy of the world

Group: A

Name: Equatorial Guinea

Nickname: Nzalang Nacional (Meaning: National Thunder)

Fifa Ranking: 118

ELO Ranking: 132

CAF Ranking: 36

Previous AFCON: In 2012 Equatorial Guinea qualified automatically as co-hosts with Gabon, and reached the Quarterfinal stage, where they were beaten 3-0 by the Ivory Coast. The team had failed to progress to the final qualification round for AFCON 2015, but were later afforded the opportunity to host the tournament, and therefore qualified automatically.

The Coach: Esteban Becker 

Esteban Becker
Image Source: Esteban Becker Official Website

Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on 31 August 1964, Esteban Becker’s first involvement with Equatorial Guinea came in June 2012, when he was appointed coach of the women’s national team. His tenure there proved to be successful, as he guided the team to the 2012 women’s championship, winning every game along the way, and not conceding a single goal during the course of the tournament. This feat led to his appointment as Director of football for all national Equatoguinean sides, and more recently being called upon to replace Spaniard Andoni Goikoetxea at the helm of the men’s national team at the start of 2015.

THE SQUAD

Captain: Emilio Nsue

Average Age: 25 

GOALKEEPERS:

Name: Aito Embela Age: 18 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Malaga Juvenil (youth team), Spain

Name: Carlos Mosibe Age: 23 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Atletico Malabo, Equatorial Guinea

Name: Felipe Ovono Age: 21 Position: Goalkeeper Club:  Deportivo Mongomo, Equatorial Guinea

DEFENDERS: Name: Igor Engonga Age: 20 Position: Centre Back Club:  Club Deportivo Tropezon, Spain

Name: Daniel Evuy Age: 29 Position: Centre Back / Right Back Club: Leones Vegetarianos; Equatorial Guinea

Name: Miguel Angel Maye Age: 24 Position: Right Back Club: Akonangui, Equatorial Guinea

Name: Rui Da Gracia Age: 29 Position: Centre Back Club: Hibernians, Maltese

Name: Sipo Bohale Age: 26 Position: Left Back / Centre Back Club: AEK Larnaca, Cyprus

Name: Diosdado Mbele Age: 24 Position: Centre Back Club: Leones Vegetarianos, Equatorial Guinea 

MIDFIELDERS:

Name: Juvenal Edjogo-Owono Age: 35 Position: Attacking Midfielder Club: FC Santa Coloma, Andorra

Name: Viera Ellong Doualla Age: 27 Position: Central Midfielder Club: The Panthers, Equatorial Guinea

Name: Pablo Ganet Age: 20 Position: Attacking Midfielder Club: San Sebastian de los Reyes, Spain

Name: Javier Balboa Age: 29 Position: Right Winger / Attacking Midfielder Club: Estoril, Portugal

Name: Carlos Martin Briones Age: 29 Position: Midfielder Club: College Europa, Gibraltar

Name: Emilio Nsue Age: 25 Position: Right Midfielder / Right Winger Club: Middlesborough, England

Name: Iban Randy Iyanga Age: 27 Position: Left Midfielder / Left Winger Club: Iraklis Psachna, Greece

Name: Ivan Zarandona Age: 34 Position: Defensive Midfielder Club: Biu Chun Rangers, China  

FORWARDS:

Name: Ruben Belima Age: 22 Position: Left Winger Club: Real Madrid Castilla

Name: Ivan Bolado Age: 25 Position: Centre Forward Club: Pune City, India

Name: Raul Fabiani Age: 30 Position: Centre Forward Club: Olimpic Xativa, Spain

Name: Kike Age: 21 Position: Striker Club: Mallorca B, Spain

Name: Ruben Dario Age: 21 Position: Forward Club: Leones Vegetarianos, Equatorial Guinea

Name: Ivan Slavador Edu Age: 19 Position: Striker Club: Valencia Mestalla, Spain

WORD ON THE STANDS

Having missed out on the tournament in 2013, the host nation will be looking to make an impression in this year’s edition of Africa’s showpiece.  Under the guidance of new coach Esteban Becker, the new look Nzalang Nacional side will be desperate to overcome their failure to qualify for the tournament and will be determined to shine in front of their home crowd. With a solid combination of youth and experience, and the influx of Spanish based players coming into the side, Esteban Becker will be hoping his side emerge as the surprise package in this tournament. Home fans always expect a good showing from their side, regardless of their odds or rankings, and Equatorial Guinea is no exception to this. Esteban Becker’s squad selection features a large youth contingent, which may lead to scepticism amongst some fans, but his success with the women’s team will be a source of optimism and excitement among the bulk of the Equatoguinean following.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s