Date: January 26th, 2015
Venue: Nuevo Estadio de Ebebiyín
City: Ebebiyín, Equatorial Guinea
Time: 20:00 (CAT)
Match Result: Cape Verde 0 – 0 Zambia
Goal Scorers: N/A
The GSV Top Class Award
Football is known as the beautiful game for a reason, very few sports offer equal or superior entertainment value regardless of the conditions or playing standard; Cape Verde and Zambia receive our GSV Top Class Award for playing on and endeavouring to gain a result during a downpour that would have stopped the most entertaining of pick-up games in the street. Both sets of players knew that their nation needed a win and they played their hearts out to ensure that they could give themselves a shot at making it into the next round; for the heart they showed at the risk of getting a cold in such dire conditions, Cape Verde and Zambia are the worthy winners of our GSV Top Class Award.
The GSV Class Clown Award
While many armchair pundits were quick to take to social networks and question why the game was allowed to go on despite the unplayable conditions, we at GSV could not help but nod our heads in agreement; the drainage system at the Nuevo Estadio de Ebebiyín was below the standard required for an international competition that is played in a season known to provide it’s fair share of heavy rainfall in most parts of Africa. The team of officials on duty were of the opinion that the conditions were playable, an opinion we at GSV feel makes them deserving of our GSV Class Clown Award; we would like to assume that the pressure to ensure that the evening ends with the group qualifiers decided, yet the lack of playable conditions could have cost both sides a shot at playing the calibre of football that would have given them a fairer chance at securing a berth in the quarter-finals. It’s also worth mentioning how the conditions made for dire viewing of the game and those are just a few of the reasons we feel that the match officials as a team are worthy winners of our GSV Class Clown Award.
The Grand Stand View
For a game that could have helped to decide exactly which side was deserving of a place in the quarter-finals, the lads did go out of their way to try and provide their nation with the success they so desperately hoped for; the conditions did not make it easy for either side to play their high octane hard running attacking football, yet they still managed to create chances and it was down to a lack of composure on either side that we did not manage to see a winner emerge out of the tie. Both sides may have played a few notches below their expected standards throughout the tournament, Cape Verde were unfortunate not to add to their solitary goal scored and a reshuffled Zambia will need to elevate their play if they are to be consistently ranked amongst Africa’s better sides going forward. The talent is there for both sides to play better, winning, football in the coming years; we at GSV hope that the management of the sides use this foundation to build more complete football units that can continue to entertain us all for years to come.