Drogba relies on bundesliga help at the cape

Drogba relies on Bundesliga help at the Cape

For the ex-chelsea FC star, who is now active in china, the tournament in south africa is about banishing a curse. Drogba has already had his hands on the cup twice – and failed in both 2006 (against agypt) and 2012 (against zambia) as a heiber title candidate in the penalty shootout. "There are still some titles i want to win and the africa cup is right up there," drogba told tv station "eurosport".

This time the roles are clearly distributed again. "We accept our position as favorites. We have great players who have won a lot with their clubs," said the french coach of the ivory coast, sabri lamouchi. Until the first game on tuesday against togo, the elephants can relax and watch the competition. The cape cup opens on saturday with a match between hosts sud africa and rude aubenseiter cape verde.

Auber boka and ya konan are just two other bundesliga pros at the continental tournament: aristide bance of FC augsburg and cedric makiadi of SC freiburg. Makiadi and the democratic republic of congo will face the second title contender ghana on sunday. Ghana made it to the quarterfinals of the 2010 world cup in south africa – but lost to uruguay in an unfortunate penalty shootout. Other opponents of kongo are niger and the team from mali, which will probably find it difficult to concentrate on fubball in view of the armed conflicts in its home country.

For makiadi’s team, the preparation is anything but quiet. Shortly before the start of the tournament, the team refused to train. The cause of the protest is a dispute over bonus payments. Coach claude le roy reported strikes by his team because of chaotic procedures during preparations. The coach himself threatened before the first game on sunday against ghana with departure.

For bance, the africa cup starts on monday against nigeria, the third major team on the continent, which is considered to have a legitimate chance of winning the cup. Other preliminary round opponents in group C are the surprise winners of last year’s african championship from zambia, as well as athiopia, which qualified for a final round for the first time in more than 30 years.

In soccer city, the site of the 2010 world cup final, sudafrica is determined to avoid a false start in front of 80,000 spectators. But "bafana bafana" is warned. The underdogs from cape verde eliminated rude cameroon in the qualifiers and sent the people of the small atlantic islands into a fubball frenzy.

Besides johannesburg, where on 10. February also the final game of the 29. When the african championship is staged, rustenburg and nelspruit, durban and port elizabeth will be the venues, as they were for the world cup. The metropolis of cape town was not considered after some quarrels.

Only four german players at the africa cup are surprisingly few in european comparison, but also proof that the bundesliga is relying more on home-grown talent. France’s clubs have to do without 54 players, england has 19 african cup participants and 16 are playing in portugal.

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