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AFCON top scorer Emilio Nsue was Ineligible for Equatorial Guinea

AFCON top scorer Emilio Nsue was Ineligible for Equatorial Guinea

FIFA has determined that Equatorial Guinea captain Emilio Nsue was never eligible to represent the African nation during his 11-year international career.

Nsue won the Golden Boot as the top goalscorer at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) earlier this year, scoring five goals in four appearances, but has been banned by FIFA for six months from national team games.

In December 2013, FIFA ruled that Nsue was not eligible to play for Equatorial Guinea after he had made several appearances for Spain’s youth teams. Despite this ruling, he continued to represent Equatorial Guinea.

FIFA has published a detailed verdict explaining its decision to strip two wins from Equatorial Guinea in the 2026 World Cup qualifying games played in November.

In March, FIFA opened a new investigation into Nsue’s eligibility. Despite being given a six-day deadline to respond, no response from Nsue arrived.

A 15-page FIFA document from May 10, 2024, detailed the difficulties faced by the Equatoguinean federation in attempting to get Nsue approved a decade earlier.

As a result of his ineligibility, Emilio Nsue will not be able to retain the 2023 AFCON Golden Boot. Additionally, Equatorial Guinea was ineligible to participate in the last AFCON, and therefore, they are no longer entitled to maintain their appearance fee.

The versatile forward holds the record for most international goals for Equatorial Guinea, with 22 goals in 43 appearances. FIFA has acknowledged this feat as a significant achievement.

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