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Equatorial Guinea Field Two Ineligible Players

Equatorial Guinea fielded two ineligible players in a 2018 Africa Women Cup of Nations (AWCON), second round first leg qualifier against Kenya that was played on Wednesday at the Kenyatta Stadium in Nairobi, according to reports.

The African women football powerhouse fielded two Cameroonians namely Celestina Manga Besecu and Laetitia Chapeh Yimga in a match that Nzalang Nacional lost 1-2 to the hosts.

Laetita Chapeh who currently plays for Lille in France, a club that she joined in January 2017, was born in Douala, Cameroon. Her football journey started at Black Queens FC of Younde and thereafter she signed for Equatorial Guinean side Waiso Ipola.

It was at Waiso Ipola, a club that plays in Equatorial Guinean women football league, where it is reported that un-named football agent enticed her to change nationality. Chapeh is said to have accepted the deal and was furnished with Equatorial Guinean passport during her first season at the local league.

A confession on illegally obtained citizenship is easily obtained from Chapeh’s interview with her French club portal, , that was conducted on 30th May 2018 stating she only played just for one season in the Equatorial Guinean League.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“I was born in Douala and studied there. Once the Bac in my pocket, I went to Equatorial Guinea….. . That’s how in 2011, I had the good fortune to play the World Cup in Germany, “[/perfectpullquote]

she said as translated from French.

FIFA rule clearly states players with no blood connection to a country are only allowed to represent it if they have lived and played there for five years but that was not the case with the midfielder.

Right after the 2011 World Cup, Chapeh flew to Poland where she signed a one-year deal with FC Katowice before joining another Polish side Medyk Konin  where she played for two seasons. From Poland she went to Lithuania and joined Gintra Universitetas, gaps which clearly indicates she never played in Equatorial Guinea for a mandatory five years.

Another player who was fielded in that match is Celestina Manga Besecu who’s her real name is Fadimatou Veronique Nsongone.

It is believed she used a falsified passport number F0225452 and played in the second half of the match where she was introduced in the 52nd minute for Nilagrosa Obono Obiang’.

The midfielder was in the starting eleven but her name was removed minutes before kick-off with Equatorial Guinean officials alleging that she sustained an injury during warm up only to be thrown into the fray seven minutes into the second half.

Ducor Sports has leant that Football Kenya Federation (FKF) has already reported Celstina’s issue to Confederation of African Football (CAF) headquarters in Egypt, accompanied by the payment of a protest right fixed to USD 2000 to be returned to the protesting team if the protest is upheld.

Unconfirmed reports have also indicated that some other two players namely Jacky Messomo and Chisana Okoro who started the match are not pure Equatorial Guinean nationals as they were born in Cameroon and Nigeria respectively. It is suspected that both illegally obtained passports for the adopted country though our investigations could verify the information.

A quick search on Wikipedia indicates that Messomo started her football in Cameroon with FC Minafe Yaoundé in 2008 and later signed for Slovakian side FK Union Nove Zamky in year 2013.

The only way Messomo was eligible to play for Equatorial Guinea is if she played for clubs there from 2006 to 2010. Records indicate that between 2008 to the present she has been playing professional football outside the country.

Same case applies to Chisana Okoro the striker who was donning jersey 15 in the match against Harambee Starlets of Kenya. Information on respected online portal, indicates that all in her lifetime she has played for different football clubs in Nigeria, Poland, Lithuania, Belarus, Albania and now in France with FC Rouen.

It is not the first time Equatorial Guinea’s women’s team has brought suspicion in the plans to use of non-nationals for the qualifier.

In the first incident the team interim coach Daniel Lola is believed to have sent a call to a Nigerian Blessing Diala but when the football officials learnt that the information was already in public they dropped her from the squad just four days before the match.

Equatorial Guinea were in October last year banned from participating in the 2019 Women’s World Cup after the country’s football association was sanctioned by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee for fielding ineligible players and falsifying documents.

The decision ruled them out from 2018 AWCON  qualifiers since the top three nations at the continental showpiece qualify for the World Cup, but were permitted by CAF Emergency Committee to feature in the qualifiers.


Featured Photo: Ineligible players?: Laetitia Chapeh Yimga (Jersey 15), Celestina Manga (Jersey 12-not in the picture) Jacky Mossomo Annette (Jersey 5) Chinasa Okoro (Jersey 15)

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