Achille Emaná

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Achille Emaná
Achille Emana cropped.jpg
Emana playing for Cameroon
Personal information
Full name Achille Emaná Edzimbi
Date of birth (1982-06-05) 5 June 1982 (age 32)
Place of birth Yaoundé, Cameroon
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Attacking midfielder
Youth career
1997–1999 Babimbi Douala
1999–2000 Valencia
2000–2001 Toulouse
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2001–2008 Toulouse 231 (28)
2008–2011 Betis 91 (34)
2011–2012 Al-Hilal 11 (4)
2012 Al-Ahli (loan) 11 (2)
2012–2013 Al-Ahli 12 (4)
2013 Al Wasl (loan) 11 (3)
2013–2014 Cruz Azul 15 (1)
National team
2003– Cameroon 42 (7)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 00:00, 2 June 2014 (UTC).

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 00:00, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

Achille Emaná Edzimbi (born 5 June 1982), known as Emaná, is a Cameroonian professional footballer who plays as an attacking midfielder.

He spent most of his professional career with Toulouse in France and Betis in Spain, playing his last years in Arab countries.

Emaná gained nearly 50 caps for Cameroon, appearing with the country at the 2010 World Cup and three African Cup of Nations tournaments.

Club career[edit]

Toulouse[edit]

Emaná was born in Yaoundé. After a brief youth spell in Spain with Valencia CF, he moved in 2000 to France and joined Toulouse FC. The following year, at only 19, he became an important first-team unit for the Ligue 2 club, never playing in less than 32 games in his first four seasons combined and helping the Haute-Garonne side achieve promotion to Ligue 1 in his second year.

In 2005, following Michael Essien's departure to Chelsea, Emaná reportedly attracted interest from French giants Olympique Lyonnais who were looking to replace the Ghanaian,[1] with fellow ligue club Olympique de Marseille also joining the race.[2] The player stayed nonetheless at Toulouse, scoring eight times in 36 matches as the club finished a best-ever third in the first division, thus achieving UEFA Champions League qualification honours.

During the following off-season Emaná was strongly linked with English Premier League club Portsmouth, where he would have joined a large contingent of African players. His chances of a move were quashed, however, when he was unable to obtain a work permit,[3][4][5] and he subsequently penned a new two-year contract with Toulouse, until 2010.[6]

In spring 2008, it was reported that English sides West Ham United and Newcastle United were interested in acquiring Emaná's services,[7] with La Liga outfit Sevilla FC also said to be tracking the Cameroonian.[8] Eventually, nothing came of it again, and he saw out the entire season with the French, which finished in 17th position, being the first team placed outside the relegation zone.

Betis[edit]

On 11 June 2008, it was reported that Real Betis were negotiating with Toulouse for Emaná's transfer. The player was quoted as being keen to secure a move to Spain to further his career, even though his current club had apparently already rejected two bids for his signature.[9] On 22 July he finally completed his move to the Andalusians, for a fee of £5.5 million.[10]

On 19 October 2008 Emaná netted his first goal for Betis, in a 3–0 home win over RCD Mallorca.[11] In mid-April 2009 he added braces against Racing de Santander (3–2 away win[12]) and Sporting de Gijón (2–0 at home[13]), finishing his first season with 11 goals – club's best – and seven assists, but his team was relegated in the last matchday.

In spite of heavy speculation about his future,[14] Emaná continued to be an essential unit for Betis in the following Segunda División seasons. The attacking trio of himself and strikers Rubén Castro and Jorge Molina combined for more than 50 league goals in 2010–11, as the club returned to the top division after two years of absence.[15]

International career[edit]

An international since 2003, Emaná represented the Cameroonian national team at that year's FIFA Confederations Cup, also appearing for the country in the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations, where his side exited in the quarter-finals.

Late in 2007, frustrated with the treatment he received whilst at the service of the national team, he retired from international play,[16] but returned shortly after,[17] appearing in the 2008 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, where he scored against Zambia in a 5–1 group stage win – Cameroon eventually lost in the final to Egypt.

Emaná represented Cameroon at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, playing in two games (two defeats) in an eventual group stage exit for the Lions Indomptables.

Honours[edit]

Club[edit]

Toulouse
Betis
Al Ahli
Cruz Azul

Country[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]