A press conference was held last Tuesday morning to address the questions from the media about the great match between the Sony of Ela Nguema with its immediate follower, a senior member and contender for the title, the club Deportivo Mongomo. When asked about his aspirations for the team in the National Championship, the coach of Sony of Ela Nguema answered, “We are the current champions, a situation that, like anyone, we’d like to achieve once again; we know that it is possible, but we must work hard.”
Co-hosts Equatorial Guinea lost for the first time in the Africa Cup on Sunday in a match against the national team of Zambia. The Malabo game has ensured that both sides will now qualify for the quarter finals.
The Nzalang performed a great first half, controlling the game of Zambia at all times and also creating goal opportunities.
In the second half Fabiani entered the game, replacing Thierry, and the Zambian team jumped onto the field seeking the goal that would ensure the classification and top position in the group.
In the press conference after the match, Gilson Paulo said he would have an immediate meeting with the players to talk about the game in order “to not let their spirits drop. The players are professionals and are not going to be affected by this defeat. We will continue working as usual, we must correct the mistakes and be optimistic.”
The 62-year-old Brazilian coach of Equatorial Guinea, Gilson Paulo, hired just weeks before the start of the Cup of African Nations, has surpassed expectations with the Nzalang Nacional’s wins over Libya and Senegal and has been rewarded with a new one year contract.
Equatorial Guinea, ranked 151st in the world, lost to Zambia on Sunday night but this has not affected their spot in the quarterfinals.
They face Cape Verde, Tunisia and Sierra Leone in their third-round World Cup qualifying group starting in June.
Equatorial Guinea has named Gilson Paulo as the new coach for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations. Just two weeks before they co-host the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations this January 21, the 62 yr. old will take the place of Frenchman Henri Michel, who quit his position last month.
Something Paulo will have to address is the issue of naturalized players in the squad, for former coach Henri Michel had chosen a number of naturalized players above those with ‘true Equatoguinean heritage‘.
This had led to friction amongst the squad but midfielder Juvenal Edjogo says spirits have lifted considerably since the Frenchman’s departure.
‘The mood in the squad is much better now,’ the midfielder told BBC Sport.
Gilson Paulo’s first match as coach will be on Friday, January 6 when the team will host South Africa in a friendly in Bata. Gilson Paulo is the former youth coach of Brazil’s Vasco da Gama.