Football Football

Becker to lead Equatorial Guinea at Cup of Nations



PARIS, France, January 6 -Argentine Esteban Becker has been appointed coach of host nation Equatorial Guinea and will lead the team at the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced on Tuesday.

The tournament, which was only switched from Morocco to Equatorial Guinea in November, begins in just 11 days on January 17 and runs until February 8.

Becker led the women’s Equatorial Guinea team to the African title in 2012 and takes over from Spaniard Andoni Goikoetxea who was fired on December 31.

The team were initially disqualified in the preliminary round, for fielding an ineligible player, but welcomed back into the fold as host nation when Morocco were stripped of the right following their request to have the tournament delayed over the threat of Ebola.

Equatorial Guinea will be making only their second appearance in the final stages after co-hosting the 2012 rendition with Gabon and unexpectedly reaching the quarter-finals.

That campaign also featured a late coaching switch when Frenchman Henri Michel was replaced by Brazilian Gilson Paulo just 20 days before kick-off.