After struggling in the earliest stages of the preliminaries since making their debut in qualifying ahead of France 1998, Guinea-Bissau made some waves last term. The Djurtus almost pulled off a shock in the opening round against Togo, but after a 1-1 draw in the home leg, they were toppled 1-0 in a surprisingly narrow contest.
The majority of their players compete in the lower tiers of Portuguese football, although Arnaud Mendy and Amido Balde have made in-roads in Britain. Balde, who is a former Portuguese youth international, has played in Scotland, Belgium and Israel and will no doubt lead the attacking line.
Paulo Torres is a former Sporting Lisbon defender and was a part of the so-called 'golden generation' of Portuguese players that won the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 1991. After retiring, he moved straight into coaching and was in charge of a number of clubs in the Portuguese lower leagues before taking over Sporting Bissau.
2 – The number of matches Guinea-Bissau have played in each of the last five FIFA World Cup™ qualifying campaigns.
The former stars
Amadu Apatchi, Amadu Balde, Joao Carlos “Madjer”