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2010 African Cup Of Nations Group D Preview
By Damien Johnson
Published January 06, 2010

Cameroon Lions Indomptables (Indomitable Lions)
Path to Angola

Group A, Winners; Cameroon were placed in what was seen by many observers as the toughest qualifying group, alongside Morocco, Togo and Gabon. Cameroon sputtered out of the gates of qualification, losing their first game to Togo in Accra and a 0-0 draw against Morocco in Yaoundé.  Cameroon looked in trouble going into their home and home matches with the group leaders Gabon five points behind with only four days in between fixtures.  The Indomitable Lions once again showed their fighting spirit regaining control of the group with their two victories over Gabon and followed up by defeating Togo and Morocco to book their place in South Africa.

Coach: Paul Le Guen, signed a short-term deal with Cameroon with the task of resurrecting their flailing qualification hopes .Cameroon previously employed two coaches during the third round of qualification, Le Guen replaced interim coach Thomas Nkono after a lackluster home draw against Morocco. 
Le Guen has a rich coaching pedigree managing the likes of Rennes, Lyon, Rangers and Paris Saint-Germain.
Le Guen managed to put the Indomitable Lions back on track, earning four straight victories sealing their place at the World Cup and earning himself a new contract in the process.


Star player:  Samuel Eto'o (Inter Milan, Italy) shortly after his appointment Le Guen removed the armband from longtime captain Rigobert Song and named the superstar striker captain.
The Inter Milan 'hitman' has won nearly every trophy imaginable and will look to add yet another in Angola.
Outlook: Cameroon head to Angola seeking their fifth Nations Cup title, looking to continue their fine form from qualifying; Cameroon has an excellent blend of young talent and veteran leadership and will be a tough out for any opponent.

The Indomitable Lions will be heavily favored to qualify from Group D and should be able to navigate their way to at least a semi-final place, however, for the Cameroonians and thing less that a title will be seen as a great disappointment.

Le Guen has called up a star studded squad, sticking with the core of players which he guided in their qualification turn around.  Veteran Rigobert Song will participate in the Nations Cup for a record 8th time.
Sébastien Bassong misses out on the tournament which will surely be a relief to Tottenham boss, Harry Redknapp. His Spurs teammate Benoit Assou-Ekotto pulled out of the squad with a groin injury; he has been replaced by Neuchatel Xamax defender Gilles Augustin Binya

Squad:
Goalkeepers: Carlos Kameni (Espanyol, Spain), Hamidou Souleymanou (Kayserispor, Turkey), Guy N'Dy Assembe (Valenciennes, France)

Defenders:  Rigobert Song (Trabzonspor, Turkey), Geremi (Newcastle United, England), Henri Bedimo (Chateauroux, France), Andre Bikey (Burnley, England), Benoit Assou-Ekotto (Tottenham Hotspur, England) Aurelien Chedjou (Lille, France), Nicolas Nkoulou (AS Monaco, France)

Midfielders: Alex Song (Arsenal, England), Jean Makoun (Lyon, France), Stephane Mbia (Marseille, France), Georges Mandjeck (Kaiserslautern, Germany), Joel Matip (Shalke 04, Germany), Enoh Eyong (Ajax Amsterdam, Holland), Landry Nguemo (Celtic, Scotland), Achille Emana (Real Betis, Spain), Somen A Tchoyi (Red Bull Salzburg, Austria

Attackers: Paul Alo'o Efloulou (AS Nancy, France), Achille Webo (Mallorca, Spain), Mohamadou Idrissou (SC Freiburg, Germany), Samuel Eto'o (Inter Milan, Italy)


Tunisia Les Aigles de Carthage (The Eagles of Carthage)
Path to Angola

Group B ,  Runners-up; most pundits expected the Carthage Eagles to pick up victory on match day six that would see them to the World Cup but The Mozambicans had other ideas and thoroughly outplayed the Tunisians in Maputo in route to a 1-0 victory. Compounded with Nigeria's Obafemi Martins scoring a late winner against Kenya costing the Tunisia a world cup ticket and former coach Humberto Coelho his job.

Coach:   Faouzi Benzarti is one of the most successful coaches in the Tunisia's domestic league's history.  The attack minded coach's appointment is a relief to Tunisian supporters who have not been thrilled with the team's style of play under his predecessors.

Star player:  Oussama Darragi (Espérance, Tunisia) the playmakers skills, vision and creativity were on display during the qualifying campaign providing two goals and two assists being used largely as a substitute.
The midfield magician's last gasp equalizer against Nigeria in Abuja was thought to be the turning point in the battle for the World Cup ticket but fate would see things differently.

Outlook:  Although he has had little time with the squad Benzarti has brought with him a new found hope amongst the team's supporters and the 2004 Nations Cup champions will look to shake off the disappointment of missing out on the Mundial with an impressive display at the Nations Cup.
Tunisia will be without Youssef Mouihbi who is suffering from an adductor injury; Fahid Ben Khalfallah who refused the call up without justification.

Squad:
Goalkeepers: Farouk Ben Mustapha (CA Bizerte), Aymen Mathlouthi (Etoile Sahel), Adel Nefzi (Club Africain)

Defenders: Yassine Mikari (Sochaux, France), Souhail Ben Radhia (Etoile Sahel), Khelil Chammam (Esperance), Radhouene Felhi (1860 Munich, Germany), Karim Haggui (Hannover 96, Germany), Bilel Ifa (Club Africain), Ammar Jemel (Etoile Sahel), Khaled Souissi (Club Africain)

Midfielders: Chaouki Ben Saada (Nice, France), Oussama Darragi (Esperance), Chadi Hammami (CS Sfaxien), Khaled Korbi (Esperance), Haithem Mrabet (CS Sfaxien), Mohamed Ali Nafkha (Etoile Sahel), Hocine Ragued (Slavia Prague, Czech Republic)

Forwards: Ahmed Akaichi (Etoile Sahel), Amine Chermiti (Al Ittihad Jeddah, Saudi Arabia), Zouheir Dhaouadi (Club Africain), Issam Jomaa (Racing Lens, France), Youssef Msakni (Esperance)


Gabon Azingo Nationale (Black Panthers)
Path to Angola

Group A, Runners-up; Gabon were the talk of the qualifiers with their two surprise victories over Togo and Morocco, however, they stumbled down the stretch of the campaign and settled for second behind Cameroon.
Coach:   Alain Giresse the former French International has improved the fortunes of the Gabonese's national team since taking over in 2006. The tactician has an impressive coaching resume managing the likes of Paris St.-Germain and Toulouse.


Star player:  Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Lille, France, on loan from AC Milan) the French born skillful striker chose to play for the Gabonese like his father and brother before his current striker partner of long time he will surely cause backlines headaches playing alongside veteran Daniel Cousin.


Outlook: The Panthers will embark on their fourth Nations Cup Tournament, first in ten years and will look to rediscover the fine form they began the third round of qualification with sound victories over Morocco and Togo.
Since the untimely death of their President, Bongo, the Panthers have struggled and their poor form saw them lose the top spot in the group to Cameroon.

They will be out for revenge against neighbors Cameroon who beat them twice in qualification and if they rediscover the form they showed early in the qualifiers they will certainly challenge for one of the two sports in the second round. Gabon has called up three home based players; Daniel Cousin makes the squad despite being unable to find much playing time at Hull City.


Squad:

Goalkeepers: Didier Ovono Ebang (Le Mans, France), Claude Boris Nguema (Telestars FC), Yves Bitseki Moto (US Bitam)

Defenders: Georges Ambourouet (Macedonia Skopje, Macedonia), Erwin Nguema (Coton Sport Garoua, Cameroon), Bruno Ecuele Manga (Angers, France), Ernest Akouassaga (Nantes, France), Arsene do Marcolino (Les Herbiers, France), Moise Brou Apanga (Stade Brest, France), Rodrigue Moudounga (Mangasport)

Midfielders: Jean Stephane Yessi Achi Aman (Mangasport), Alain Djissikadie (TP Mazembe Englebert, DR Congo), Stephane Nguema (Rennes, France), Bruno Zita Mbanangoye (Sivasspor, Turkey), Cedric Moubamba (Dhofar, Oman), Thierry Issiemou (US Monastir, Tunisia), Paul Ulrich Kessany (Istres, France)

Forwards: Daniel Cousin (Hull City, England), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Lille, France), Willy Aubameyang (Eupen, Belgium), Fabrice do Marcolino (Laval, France), Roguy Meye (Ankaraspor, Turkey), Eric Mouloungui (Nice, France).                                           


Zambia Chipolopolo (the Copper Bullets)
Path to Angola

Group C, Third Place; Zambia started qualification with a bang, a draw in Cairo and a home victory over Rwanda. The Chipolopolo looked like they would contend for the group's World Cup place.  Zambia were only able to muster one point from their final four matches, and had to hold on against Rwanda to secure a place in the Nations Cup.


Coach:   Hervé Renard The former Black Stars assistant took over the Chipolopolo in 2008. Due to Zambia's poor form to end qualification, his job is on the line in Angola, fans will expect qualification to the second round.
Star player:  Christopher Katongo (Arminia Bielefeld, Germany) The Zambian captain is a calming force on the pitch and the striker has the pace and technique to unsettle defenders.

Outlook: Zambia have become a fixture at the nations cup they made it to the finals in 1974 and 1994 but have yet to but have yet to lift the trophy. 
Zambia is a beautiful passing team but is often let down by poor finishing.  They will need Jacob Mulenga and Christopher Katango to bring their 'scoring shoes' to Angola in they are to progress to the quarterfinals, which was the target set by Renard.
Veteran midfielder Andrew Sinkala remains in exile from the team following a bonus row with the Football Association of Zambia.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Kennedy Mweene (Free State Stars, South Africa), Kalililo Kakonje (Amazulu, South Africa), Jacob Banda (Zesco United).

Defenders: Dennis Banda (Green Buffaloes), Kampamba Chintu (Amazulu, South Africa), Hichani Himoonde (Zesco United), Emmanuel Mbola (Pyunik Yerevan, Armenia), Joseph Musonda (Lamontville Golden Arrows, South Africa), Thomas Nyirenda (Zanaco).

Midfielders: Isaac Chansa (Helsingborg, Sweden), Noah Chivuta (Maritzburg United, South Africa), Rainford Kalaba (União de Leiria, Portugal),Francis Kasonde (Al Suwaiq, Oman), Felix Katongo (Mamelodi Sundowns, South Africa), Clifford Mulenga (Mpumalanga Black Aces, South Africa), Stophira Sunzu (Zanaco), William Njobvu ((Hapoel Kiryat Shmone, Israel).

Strikers: Christopher Katongo (Arminia Bielefeld, Germany), Jacob Mulenga (FC Utrecht, Netherlands), Emmanuel Mayuka (Maccabi Tel Aviv, Israel), James Chamanga (Dalian Shide, China), Given Singuluma (TP Mazembe, DR Congo), Collins Mbesuma (Moroka Swallows, South Africa).
.





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