Brazilian Gilson Paulo named Equatorial Guinea coach

Authorities in Equatorial Guinea on Tuesday appointed Brazilian Gilson Paulo as coach of the national team to succeed Frenchman Henri Michel, who resigned last month after denouncing poor conditions of work.

A former director of sports at the Brazil-based Vasco De Gama football academy, Paulo has been tasked with preparing the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) co-host nation for the showpiece.

He will lead the Nzalang Nacional to their pre-tournament friendly against South Africa on Thursday in Bata during the inauguration of the city’s 40,000-capacity stadium where the opening ceremonies of the 28th edition of the continental showpiece will be held.

Equatorial Guinea will begin their campaign against Libya in Group A on January 21, before subsequently facing off against Senegal and Zambia.

A number of foreign born players have switched allegiance to play for the Nzalang Nacional, which local observers say could present an entirely different squad at the competition as opposed to the former mediocre outfit.