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2012 Africa Cup of Nations


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What a pitch!

I've watched a fair chunk of it, senegal have been really poor who was it who said best strike force in world football?

As expected keepers are irratic (the Mali one had a good game though) there are some really pacey players and some shocking tackling! I think it's the year of some unknown, looks so far like Zambia but with Senegal out Cameroon not even qualifying it'll shake up nicely

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Seen a bit the other day on Eurosport and the stadium was empty. I don't know whether this was down to the prices or apathy.

It's got to be an accessibility issue, not apathy. They're football mad down there.

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Is it just me that is totally apathetic to this?

I watched El Classico last night.... can anyone convince me why Equatorial Guinea v Senegal was a better bet?

You can watch club football every week.

How often do you get to watch a major international tournament?

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Is it just me that is totally apathetic to this?

I watched El Classico last night.... can anyone convince me why Equatorial Guinea v Senegal was a better bet?

You can watch club football every week.

How often do you get to watch a major international tournament?

Once every two years..... World Cup and Euros.

:D

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Seen a bit the other day on Eurosport and the stadium was empty. I don't know whether this was down to the prices or apathy.

Ticket prices are almost a weeks wages apparently. It's an awful lot like World Cup 2010 where idiots in charge of setting the cost of entry are pricing themselves out of the market. While it is somewhat satisfying to see them punished for their greed, it is at the expense of the tournament and the locals (who were probably used in the obligatory "look what it would mean to this country to get awarded the competition" part of the bid process) as grounds are empty and people who want to get in cant afford to.

Cameroon not qualifying is a major blow for crowds too, as it shares a border with Gabon and Equatorial Guinea (combined population is barely 2 million) and there would probably be loads of Cameroon fans down for the tournament if they had made it.

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Is it just me that is totally apathetic to this?

I watched El Classico last night.... can anyone convince me why Equatorial Guinea v Senegal was a better bet?

You can watch club football every week.

How often do you get to watch a major international tournament?

Once every two years..... World Cup and Euros.

:D

Exactly :)

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Not one of the 11 players who started for Equatorial Guinea yesterday were born in the country :shock:

None of Wednesday's players was born in the country, they are the lowest-ranked team to have ever played at the competition, yet co-hosts Equatorial Guinea are the first through to the quarterfinals of the Africa Cup of Nations.

An injury-time 2-1 winner over Senegal on Wednesday from Spanish fourth-division player Kily sent the United Nations of players into the final eight, after Equatorial Guinea had won their opener 1-0 against Libya.

It was quite an achievement for a country with a population of less than 700 000 and ranked a lowly 151st in the Fifa world rankings.

The Equatorial Guineans did not do it all by themselves, however.

They got help from a Brazilian goalkeeper, a Liberian defender, an Ivorian midfielder and a Cameroonian forward, as well as a host of Spanish players.

In fact, none of the 13 players that Brazilian-born coach Gilson Paulo used on Wednesday was born in the country. Of the full 23-man squad, only third choice goalkeeper Felipe Ovono and reserve defender Jose Bokung were born in Equatorial Guinea.

The National Lightning - as the team is called - embarked on its course to expand its selection base beyond the borders of the country in 2004 when Antonio Dumas took over as national team coach.

The Brazilian had previously introduced several of his countrymen into the Togolese national team when he was in charge there.

Frustrated by Equatorial Guinea's poor performances in Africa Cup of Nations and World Cup qualifiers, Dumas was encouraged by Equatorial Guinean officials and politicians to look elsewhere for talent again.

He introduced several Brazilians to the side and this policy was later expanded to include other nationalities, setting a trend.

As a former Spanish colony, it was always likely that there were players of Equatorial Guinean descent playing in Spain, but this was then extended to include virtually anybody who was willing to gain citizenship.

Journeyman defender Lawrence Doe, who has been with more than a dozen clubs during his career, was hoping to be able to play international football for his native Liberia.

But when that did not materialize, he opted instead for Equatorial Guinea and he is honest why that is so.

"I am a Guinean, they take care of me, the government take care of me here," he told journalists. "I feel very happy and very proud because even though I was born Liberian I am now a Guinean. Equatorial Guinea is my home, I have my wife and son here now."

He said that after winning their opening matches, confidence is now running high.

"We are not only playing for today, we're playing for tomorrow," he said.

The incentive for the players is, presumably, not only the lure of playing international football, but also money made available by the country's football-crazy president Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who has been accused of personally enriching himself through the country's oil wealth.

Ahead of their opening match, players were promised a 1-million dollar bonus by the president's son Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, who handed it over after the 1-0 victory against Libya - and another bonus was on its way after Wednesday's heroics.

I thought this was international football not club football :|

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Rome wasnt built in a day mate. African football was a joke barely 20 years ago, now we see some African nations becoming extremely strong sides and some African players being at the very top of the game, but the continent still has a long way to go. This is part of that process. You are talking about a country with a smaller population than Leeds, it doesnt have a proper league, it doesnt have a history of success at football. Maybe stuff like this is what the next generation of kids need to be inspired to play football? I cant see how it harms us, and a patronising attitude from people who live in football countries can't help them.

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