AFCON 2015 Country Profile: Gabon

Gabon come into the tournament having finished top of Group C in qualifying, with an unbeaten run that included 3 draws and 3 victories. We take a look at the squad they have taken to the tournament and delve intot the mentality in the camp.

Gabon_FA                 Gabon

Association Crest Source: Wikipedia

National Flag Source: Countries

Name: Gabon

Nickname: Les Pantheres (Meaning The Panthers)

FIFA Ranking: 62

ELO Ranking: 81

CAF Ranking: 16

Previous Afcon: Gabon co-hosted the 2012 edition of the Afcon spectacle and finished top of their group with 3 wins out of 3. They lost in the quarterfinal stages (5-4 on penalties) to Mali, and didn’t participate in the 2013 Afcon tournament. They qualified for this year’s tournament with an unbeaten run in qualifying group C.

The Coach: Jorge Costa

jorgecosta5
Image Source: Gabon Review

The Portuguese born Jorge Costa will be hoping to make a name for himself on the African stage, having only recently taken over the role as Gabon’s national team coach. The 43 year old Costa, or Bicho (Animal), as he is affectionately known, started his managerial career at Braga in Portugal, before spells at Olhanense and Academica earned him a job in Romania at CFR Cluj. He followed that up with spells in Cyprus and had returned to Portugal as Pacos Ferreira coach before taking over the Gabon national job, his first taste of international management.

THE SQUAD

Captain: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Average Age: 23

GOALKEEPERS: 

Name: Didier Ovono Age: 31 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Oostende, Belgium

Name: Anthony Mfa Mezul Age: 23 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Metz, France

Name: Yves Bitseki Age: 31 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Bitam, Gabon

DEFENDERS:

Name: Aaron Appindangoye Age: 22 Position: Centre Back Club:  Mounana, Gabon

Name: Yrondu Musavu-King Age: 23 Position: Centre Back/ Left Back Club: Uzes Pont Du Gard

Name: Bruno Manga Age: 26 Position: Centre Back Club: Cardiff City, England

Name: Johann Obiang Age: 21 Position: Left Back Club: Chateauroux, France

Name: Lloyd Palun Age: 26 Position: Right Back Club: Nice, France

Name: Randal Oto’o Age: 20 Position: Right Back Club: Braga, Portugal

Name: Henri Ndong Age: 20 Position: Centre Back Club: Auxerre

MIDFIELDERS:

Name: Benjamin Ze Ondo  Age: 27  Position: Left Midfielder Club: ES Setif, Algeria

Name: Levy Madinda  Age: 22  Position: Central Midfielder Club: Celta Vigo, Spain

Name: Guelor Kanga Age: 24  Position: Attacking Midfielder Club: FC Rostov, Russia

Name: Samson Mbingui Age: 22 Position: Attacking Midfielder Club: MC El Eulma, Algeria 

Name: Andre Poko Age: 21 Position: Defensive Midfielder Club: Bordeaux, France

Name: Alexander N’Doumbou Age: 23  Position: Winger Club: Marseille, France

Name: Ibrahim N’Dongo Age: 20 Position: Midfielder Club: Sfaxien, Tunisia

Name: Frederic Bulot Age: 24 Position: Right Winger Club: Charlton Athletic, England

FORWARDS:

Name: Johann Lengoualama Age: 22 Position: Secondary Striker Club: Difaa El Jadidi

Name: Malick Evouna Age: 22 Position: Centre Forward Club: Wydad Casablanca

Name: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Age: 25 Position: Winger / Secondary Striker Club: Borussia Dortmund

Name: Romaric Rogombe Age: 24 Position: Forward Club: AC Leopards, Congo-Brazzaville

Name:  Bonaventure Skambi Age: 23 Position: Centre Forward Club: ASO Chief, Algeria 

WORD ON THE STANDS:

With a young squad and a young coach, the Gabonese outfit promise to be among the most energetic of teams. While Jorge Costa has a reputation for being an advocate of strong, physical football, he has players in his squad who boast both skill and pace, so expect a balanced defense and a pacey attack when the lean, mean Gabonese machine gets going. Gabon were also one of a handful of teams to go have an unbeaten qualification campaign, and this will give the fans hope and the right attitude going into the tournament.

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