The 2015 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) will finally start on Saturday with two Group A matches on card at the Estadio de Bata Stadium.
Hosts Equatorial Guinea who qualified on the ticket of being hosts will hope to start the campaign on a winning note when they face Congo Brazzaville, while Burkina Faso will battle Gabon in the second game at the same Stadium.
The Spanish based trio of Ruben Belima Rodriguez,Enrique Boula Senoba and Pablo Comitre are expected to play a big role for the team.
But the tricky Congo side will also look to their star player Delvin Chanel Ndinga who features for Olympiakos in Greece.
In the second game, Gabon who reached the quarter final stage of the 2012 Afcon will also hope to start well.
Star player Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who features for Germany Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund is expected to lead the Gabon side together with Cardiff City player Bruno Ecuele Manga.
Early in the week Gabon’s coach Jorge Costa said their target is to kick start the event on a winning note. He said although he respects the Burkina Faso team, they have trained hard and are ready to start well.
Morocco were meant to host this year’s event, but withdrew after fears that the deadly Ebola virus. Equatorial Guinea who co-hosted the event with Gabon in 2012 rescued the situation by accepting to host the event.
The team that will compete for the coveted trophy minus the defending champions Nigeria who failed to qualify include; Equatorial Guinea, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Congo, Zambia, Tunisia, Cape Verde, DR Congo, Ghana, Algeria, South Africa, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Mali, Cameroon and Guinea