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Jan 26, 2015

Equatorial Guinea success flies in face of convention

EBIBEYIN, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Hosts Equatorial Guinea have reached the African Nations Cup quarter-finals on a wave of popular support having thrown away most of the game’s conventional wisdoms in their patchy preparations.

A motley collection of players, mainly from the lower leagues in Spain, galvanised by two former teenage talents now at a crossroads in their club careers and an Argentine-born manager who had been coaching women’s football, have upset the odds to book a place in the last eight, spurred on by their passionate fans in one of Africa’s smallest countries.

Jan 26, 2015

Hosts in safety dilemma after reaching Nations Cup knockouts

EBIBEYIN, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Qualification of hosts Equatorial Guinea for the knockout phase of the African Nations Cup has created a potential safety dilemma for the Confederation of African Football and local organisers.

The home team beat Gabon 2-0 on Sunday to finish second in Group B and will now play their quarter-final at Ebibeyin on Saturday.

Jan 25, 2015

Ivory Coast stare down barrel of bitter history

EBIBEYIN, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Ivory Coast will be hoping history does not repeat itself and they are eliminated from the African Nations Cup finals by the drawing of lots as was the case 27 years ago.

The very real scenario of a draw being needed to separate the teams in Group D has developed after Saturday’s matches at the tournament in Equatorial Guinea again ended in stalemates.

Jan 24, 2015

Gyan not yet over malaria as he savours vital goal

MONGOMO, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Ghana captain Asamoah Gyan is not yet over a bout of malaria but a dramatic last-gasp goal after he got out of his sick bed has revived his country’s hopes at the African Nations Cup.

“It’s a really bad disease, it really takes everything out of you. I still feel weak and I was in hospital last week and missed our first game,” Gyan said on Saturday.

Jan 24, 2015

Soccer-Gyan not yet over malaria as he savours vital goal

MONGOMO, Equatorial Guinea, Jan 24 (Reuters) – Ghana captain Asamoah Gyan is not yet over a bout of malaria but a dramatic last-gasp goal after he got out of his sick bed has revived his country’s hopes at the African Nations Cup.

“It’s a really bad disease, it really takes everything out of you. I still feel weak and I was in hospital last week and missed our first game,” Gyan said on Saturday.

Jan 23, 2015

Senegal go top after comeback draw with South Africa

MONGOMO, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Senegal inched closer to an African Nations Cup quarter-final place after a 1-1 draw with South Africa put them top of Group C on Friday.

Kara Mbodji’s equaliser on the hour at the Estadio de Mongomo left Senegal needing only a draw in their last group game against Algeria in Malabo to advance.

Jan 23, 2015

Algeria and Senegal bid to book last eight slots

MONGOMO (Reuters) – Algeria and Senegal can book quarter-final spots at the African Nations Cup with their second successive Group C victories when they face Ghana and South Africa respectively on Friday.

Both countries came from behind to win their opening encounters on Monday and set themselves up for early qualification to the knockout stage. Algeria, the top ranked team on the continent, take on Ghana in the first match of the double-header feature at Estadio de Mongomo, followed by Senegal’s clash with the South Africans. The group started with Senegal beating Ghana 2-1 with the last kick of the game and South Africa scoring an own goal, making a horrendous goalkeeping error and missing a penalty as they went down 3-1 to Algeria.

Jan 23, 2015

Soccer-Algeria and Senegal bid to book last eight slots

MONGOMO, Jan 23 (Reuters) – Algeria and Senegal can book quarter-final spots at the African Nations Cup with their second successive Group C victories when they face Ghana and South Africa respectively on Friday.

Both countries came from behind to win their opening encounters on Monday and set themselves up for early qualification to the knockout stage.

Jan 22, 2015

Veteran goalkeeper saves the day for DR Congo

EBIBEYIN, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Key saves in the final five minutes by the Democratic Republic of Congo goalkeeper Robert Kidiaba kept his side’s goal intact and ensured a goalless draw with Cape Verde in the African Nations Cup on Thursday.

Kidiaba, who turns 39 next month and is the oldest player at the tournament, made a double save in the 85th minute to deny Cape Verde the best chance of a bland match and then again two minutes later from Heldon’s shot.

Jan 22, 2015

Cape Verde seek to stay on course for success

EBEBIYIN, Equatorial Guinea (Reuters) – Cape Verde, the smallest country to ever compete in the African Nations Cup, will seek to take a step towards the quarter-finals when they play the Democratic Republic of Congo in one of two Group B games on Thursday.

Tunisia and Zambia start the day’s proceedings at the 5,000-capacity stadium in the small border town in Equatorial Guinea.