Sport
Equatorial Guinea have nine Brazilians
Publish Date: Jun 03, 2014
Equatorial Guinea have nine Brazilians
Equatorial Guinea national football team
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By Fred Kaweesi and agencies

Nations Cup qualifier

July 19

Uganda v E.Guinea

A majority of Cranes faithful might be aware that Cranes will confront Equatorial Guinea in their next two-legged preliminary Nations Cup qualifying fixtures.

And out of curiosity, some might discover and probably relax after learning that Cranes’ next opponents are ranked a lowly 113th in the FIFA world rankings.

But it will be extremely disastrous for anyone to read so much into such statistics considering Cranes’ current shape and Equatorial Guinea’s progress in the last one year.

The Nzalang Nacional - which translates as ‘The National Lightning’ — have only competed at the Nations Cup once and that was as hosts in 2012.

However, the tiny central African state, whose population is 700,000, has done enough to raise its profile on the African, and later on world stage.

Their women’s national team is one of the strongest in Africa and won the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations.

Their men’s team, however, still faces a far steeper struggle but is fast improving.

In 2011, Equatorial Guinea was ranked 165 in the world and a lowly 44th in Africa.

But in three years, this Central African outfit find themselves just 27 places behind Uganda and 31 in Africa, thanks in large part to unrelenting support from Equatorial Guinea President Obiang Nguema.

“We have the same human qualities as everyone else. The women have won the Africa Cup of Nations, so why shouldn’t our men,” Ngueam once told BBC.


Massa heads the ball against Madagascar. PHOTO: Mpalanyi Ssentongo

Enough money to spend

This explains why the government was ready to spend on hosting the 2012 Nations Cup tournament and why Nguema was willing to spend billions on hosting World Champions Spain for a high-profile international friendly.

Nguema’s son Teodorin Obiang manages the country’s finances and has shown willingness to spearhead the team’s road to the 2015 Nations Cup tournament.

According to an internet blog by Sean Jacobs, a Spanish publication El Mundo once reported that Equatorial Guinea’s only TV station (owned by Teodorin) announced he had told the head of the national football federation that he would offer a bonus of $6.7m (Sh17b) to the national team if they beat Spain.

He also once pledged 751,265 euros (sh2b)to the team if they beat Libya in their first Nations Cup match in 2012. The government then promised an extra incentive of $1m (sh2b) as a winning bonus to share if they beat the Libyans.

That was besides the $20,000 (sh50m) for every goal they managed to score during the game.

So, motivation has never been an issue.

The country’s football association has decided to parade Brazilian-born players to spearhead the football revolution in the country.

Guinea’s Brazilian coach Paulo Gilson has selected a number of naturalised players in his squad - Danilo (Brazil), Lawrence Doe (Liberia), Narcisse Ekanga (Cameroon) and Ben Konate (Ivory Coast) among his lead stars.

So if Cranes are to negotiate their way to the group stages, they will need to carry a huge goal advantage into the return leg as the game in Guinea will be no game for the fainthearted.

RELATED ARTICLES

Uganda 1 Madagascar 0

Uganda Cranes stumble in Madagascar

Cranes unveil new home kit ahead of Madagascar game

 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
CHAN: Uganda advances to next round despite draw
Uganda has progressed to the next round of the African Nations Championship (CHAN) 2016 qualifiers despite a 1-1 draw against Tanzania in the second leg tie....
CHAN: Micho releases Cranes final squad to battle Tanzania
Uganda Cranes tactician has released the final squad to face the Taifa Star of Tanzania in the return leg of the first round of the CHAN qualifiers....
Seals continue to excel at invitation gala
Seals Swim Club's Mercedes Mwebeiha and Jeremy Ryant continued with their winning ways, bagging 3 gold each as the Seals Invitational Swimming Championship entered day-two....
Pool League: Kingpin Gumikiriza confident of victory
Skin Samona Pool Club team captain Alfred ‘Black Sheep’ Gumikiriza has promised table leaders Gals 'fire' when the two teams clash in the national league on Sunday....
Boxing: National title fight for Thursday
Ugandan boxers will on Friday fight for national titles at Calendar Rest House in Kampala....
Seals swimming Invitational starts on a high
Ten year-old Kenya Torpedo Club''s Daryl Anjichi Anambo and 14 year old Ken Lohol were the stars on day-one as the Seals Invitational Swimming Championship kicked off at Kampala Parents School Swimming Pool, Thursday....
Do you think Ugandan graduates are the worst in the region?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter