AFCON 2015 Country Profile: Cape Verde Islands

Cape_Verde_FA       cv

Association Crest Source: Wikipedia

National Flag Source: Flags of the world

Name: Cape Verde Islands

Nickname: Tubaroes Azuis (meaning Blue Sharks)

FIFA Ranking: 40

ELO Ranking: 84

CAF Ranking: 7

Previous Afcon: The Cape Verde Islands finished second in Group A during the 2013 Afcon tournament, behind hosts South Africa, but were beaten 2-0 by Ghana in the quarterfinal stages. For the 2015 Afcon, they finished top of qualifying group F, ahead of Zambia.

The Coach: Jose Rui Aguas

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Image Source: Benfiquista Nasci

Portuguese born Rui Aguas had only previously coached in his native Portugal before taking over at Cape Verde, with spells at Estoril and Vitoria Setubal followed by assistant manager posts at Maritimo and Braga. The 54 year old took the Cape Verde job in 2014 and will be looking to make a name for himself on the African continent. Having led the Blue Sharks to the 2015 edition of Africa’s showpiece, one might say he hasn’t had a bad start to life in Africa.

THE SQUAD

Captain: Marco Soares

Average Age: 25

GOALKEEPERS: 

Name: Vozinha Age: 28 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Progresso, Angola

Name: Kevin Sousa  Age: 20 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Nacional, Portugal

Name: Ivan Cruz Age: 18 Position: Goalkeeper Club: Gil Vincente

DEFENDERS:

Name: Stopira Age: 26 Position: Left Back Club: Videoton, Hungary

Name: Fernando Varela Age: 27 Position: Centre Back Club: Steaua Bucuresti, Romania

Name: Carlos Silveira de Graca Age: 27 Position: Centre Back Club: CSU Craiova, Romania

Name: Gege Age: 26 Position: Centre Back Club: Maritimo, Portugal

Name: Nivaldo Age: 26 Position: Left Back Club: Teplice, Czech Republic

Name: Jeffery Fortes Age: 25 Position: Right Back Club: FC Dordrecht, Netherlands

MIDFIELDERS:

Name: Carlitos Age: 29 Position: Right Winger Club: AEL Limassol

Name: Babanco  Age: 29  Position: Left Midfielder Club: Estoril, Portugal

Name: Sergio Semedo  Age: 26  Position: Central Midfielder Club: Olhanense, Portugal

Name: Toni Varela Age: 28  Position: Defensive Midfielder Club: Excelsior, Netherlands

Name: Luis Carlos Soares Age: 28 Position: Left Winger Club: CSKA Sofia, Bulgaria

Name: Nuno Rocha Age: 22 Position: Centre Midfielder Club: CSU Craiova, Romania

Name: Calu Age: 31  Position: Centre Midfielder Club: Progresso, Angola

Name: Odair Fortes Age: 27 Position: Right Winger Club: Reims, France

Name: Kuca Miranda Age: 25 Position: Right Winger Club: Estoril, Portugal

Name: Heldon Ramos Age: 26 Position: Right Winger Club: Sporting Lisbon, Portugal

Name: Garry Rodrigues Age: 24 Position: Attacking Midfielder Club: Elche, Spain

FORWARDS:

Name: Julio Tavares Age: 26 Position: Centre Forward Club: Dijon, France

Name: Ryan Mendes Age: 25 Position: Centre Forward Club: Lille, France

Name: Djaniny Age: 23 Position: Centre Forward Club: Santos Laguna, Mexico

WORD ON THE STANDS

The Cape Verde faithful will be hoping to improve on last campaign’s quarterfinal showing, despite being under a new manager. The European influence in the side is evident, with most of the players plying their trade in Portugal and the French Ligue 1. There are no home based players in the squad, so it will be interesting to see how the team plays during the course of the tournament, with most of their fans confident of advancing from the group stages.

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