Africa Cup of Nations roundup: Aubameyang leads Gabon, hosts surprise (video)


The first day of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations featured spiffy opening ceremonies, strong host-team impressions and a superstar giving a broadcaster nightmare as the tournament got under way in Equatorial Guinea.

[ MORE: 2015 AFCON preview ]

We’ll begin with the early game, as the lowly-ranked hosts put a scare into the Congo. Not scarier than sleeping in a hotel with no running water and exposed electrical cables, so it’s okay.

Equatorial Guinea 1-1 Congo

After a variety of colorful moments in the celebratory opening ceremonies, Emilio Nsue made sure the host nation got to keep up the revelatory vibes with a 16th minute goal that was either a touch offsides or a brilliant razor-thin run.

Be assured that in that moment, the controversial decision to host the tournament probably felt right. The red crowd, it has lungs (and what a set-up from Mallorca B’s Kike Boula):

As the lowest-ranked team in the tournament, the “National Thunder” did get to flirt with all three points until the 87th minute. That’s when the appropriately-named Thievy Bifouma stole a point back for the Red Devils.

Burkina Faso 0-2 Gabon

Basically, Gabon declared Group A wide open. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang certainly could’ve scored three or four times in the following sequence. The broadcaster was certainly waiting… and waiting… and waiting (PIERRE?!?!?!)

The Gabon captain also played a big role in the build-up to Malick Evouna’s late goal to salt away the result.

Sunday’s matches:

Zambia vs. DR Congo

Tunisia vs. Cape Verde