2023 Afcon top scorer Emilio Nsue suspended over gross misconduct

Thursday February 15 2024
Equatorial Guinea's forward Emilio Nsue

Equatorial Guinea's forward Emilio Nsue celebrates scoring his team's first goal during the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) 2023 group 'A' match against Guinea-Bissau at the Alassane Ouattara Olympic Stadium in Ebimpe in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on January 18, 2024. PHOTO | REUTERS


The Equatoguinean Football Federation (FEGUIFUT) has indefinitely suspended the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) top scorer and captain Emilio Nsue Lopez and midfielder Ivan Salvador for gross indiscipline at the just-ended tournament in Cote d’Ivoire.

In a released statement on Tuesday, the federation did not detail the acts of indiscipline by the players but referred to a January 29 “unpleasant incident” by Ivan in Abidjan, which necessitated the intervention of the Ivorian police.

FEGUIFUT Secretary General Juan Antonio Nguema Mene said the incident "caused a major delay in the return of the team to Equatorial Guinea and also tainted its reputation”.

The statement did not give further details about the said incident, but reports suggest that the Miedz Legnica attacking midfielder allegedly created trouble when the team was checking out of their hotel by accusing the staff of stealing €500 (about Ksh81,000) from him.

The disciplinary sanctions imposed on Nsue and Iban are part of a raft of measures taken by the executive board of FEGUIFUT following a meeting at its headquarters in Malabo, the body said on its website.

Equatorial Guinea was one of the major surprises at the 2023 Afcon in Cote d’Ivoire. The Nzalang Nacional staged an exhilarating performance, finishing top of Group ‘A’ that included eventual winners Cote d’Ivoire and runners up Nigeria.


Read: Eq.Guinea crush I.Coast in huge Afcon shock, Egypt edge through

Iban scored the Nzalang Nacional’s lone goal in their 1-1 draw against Nigeria, while Nsue scored a hat-trick in Equatorial Guinea’s second group game against Guinea Bissau and a brace in their 4-0 humiliation of Cote d’Ivoire to take his goal tally to five. They lost 1-0 to Guinea in the Round of 16.

FEGUIFUT had earlier on Monday celebrated Nsue for winning the Golden Boot.

“Five goals in four games, Emilio Nsue, captain of the Equatorial Guinea national team is the official winner of the Golden Boot at the Afcon 2023 in Cote d’Ivoire," it said on its X (formrely Twitter) account.