Achille Emaná

Achille Emaná

Emaná playing for Cameroon in 2009
Personal information
Full name Achille Emaná Edzimbi
Date of birth (1982-06-05) 5 June 1982
Place of birth Yaoundé, Cameroon
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Attacking midfielder
Club information
Current team
Tokushima Vortis
Number 20
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)
2012Al-Ahli (loan) 11 (2)
2012–2013 Al-Ahli 12 (4)
2013Al Wasl (loan) 11 (3)
2013–2015 Cruz Azul 15 (1)
2015Atlante (loan) 9 (0)
2015–2016 Gimnàstic 39 (9)
2016– Tokushima Vortis 0 (0)
National team
2003– Cameroon 42 (6)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 00:00, 12 June 2016 (UTC).

‡ 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 for Japanese club Tokushima Vortis 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 and Mexico.

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


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 team 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 side 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 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 England's West Ham United and Newcastle United were interested in acquiring Emaná's services,[7] with La Liga side 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.


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]

Later years

On 11 August 2011 Emaná moved to Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal FC, in a deal worth US$6 million.[16] In January of the following year he was loaned to United Arab Emirates' Al Ahli Club (Dubai) until June, and the move was made permanent on 27 July.[17]

On 22 January 2013, Emaná was loaned to fellow league team Al Wasl FC until the end of the season, mainly as a replacement to long-term injured Mariano Donda.[18] On 27 August, after his loan expired, he signed a permanent deal with Cruz Azul from Mexico.[19]

On 17 December 2014, Emaná signed with Atlante F.C. on loan until June,[20] after being transfer listed by his parent club back in June.[21] On 24 July 2015, already as a free agent, he joined Gimnàstic de Tarragona initially on trial,[22] and subsequently agreed to a one-year contract.[23]

International career

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,[24] but returned shortly after,[25] 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.

Personal life

Emaná's younger brother, Stephane, is also a footballer. A forward, he too had spells at Betis and Gimnàstic.[26]



Al Ahli
Cruz Azul



  1. Lyon look at new Essien; Sky Sports
  2. L'OM admit Emana's an option; Sky Sports
  3. Emana waiting for Pompey offer; Sky Sports
  4. Emana keeps up Pompey hope; Sky Sports
  5. Permit problems for Pompey deal; Sky Sports
  6. Emana extends Toulouse deal; Sky Sports
  7. Emana linked with Newcastle; Sky Sports
  8. Emana linked with a move abroad; Sky Sports
  9. Emana eyes Betis switch; Sky Sports
  10. Emana earns Betis move; Sky Sports
  11. Real Betis 3–0 Mallorca; ESPN Soccernet, 19 October 2008
  12. Racing Santander 2–3 Real Betis; ESPN Soccernet, 12 April 2009
  13. Real Betis 2–0 Sporting Gijon; ESPN Soccernet, 19 April 2009
  14. Emana: "Dejar el Betis está lejos en estos momentos" (Emana: "Right now, leaving Betis is far away"); Diario de Sevilla, 17 July 2009 (Spanish)
  15. "Molina y Rubén prometen goles también en Primera" [Molina and Rubén also promise goals in Primera] (in Spanish). Diario AS. 4 September 2011. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
  16. "Cameroon's Achille Emana joins Saudi side Al Hilal". BBC Sport. 11 August 2011. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  17. "Deal for midfielder Emana completes Al Ahli's foreign quartet". The National. 27 July 2012. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  18. "Al Wasl turn to Al Ahli's Achille Emana to bail them out of injury woes". The National. 22 January 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  19. "Cruz Azul da la bienvenida a Achille Emana" [Cruz Azul welcomes Achille Emana] (in Spanish). Excelsior. 27 August 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  20. "Achille Emaná, nuevo refuerzo del Atlante" [Achille Emaná, new addition of Atlante] (in Spanish). 17 December 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  21. "Luis Fernando Tena: Yo decidí que Achille Emaná saliera de Cruz Azul" [Luis Fernando Tena: I decided that Achille Emaná will leave Cruz Azul] (in Spanish). ESPN Deportes. 2 June 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  22. "Achille Emaná entrenará con el Nàstic" [Achille Emaná will train with Nàstic] (in Spanish). Gimnàstic's official website. 24 July 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  23. "Emaná y Gal Arael, nuevos fichajes del Nàstic" [Emaná and Gal Arael, new signings of Nàstic] (in Spanish). Gimnàstic's official website. 1 August 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  24. Emana calls time on Cameroon; Sky Sports
  25. Emana thriving on the pressure;, 28 April 2010
  26. "Achille Emaná: "Mi hermano demostrará lo que vale si le dan la oportunidad de jugar"" [Achille Emaná: "My brother will show what he is worth, if given the opportunity to play"] (in Spanish). El Desmarque. 14 January 2013. Retrieved 28 November 2015.

External links

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