Equatorial Guinea, making its Women's World Cup debut, arrived in Germany without two of its star players. Sisters Salimata and Biliguisa Simpore were were accused of being men while competing in the 2010 African Women’s Championship in South Africa.
Salimata was also accused of having played for both Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast. She scored two goals in the 3-1 win over South Africa in the semifinals.
The gender allegations have never been publically proven. Members of Ghana's team made accusations after facing Equatorial Guinea. "You only need to have physical contact with them to know this, and we can tell from what happened most times during the match," said Diana Ankomah, as quoted by ESPNSoccerNet.
Equatorial Guinea also drew controversy for fast-tracking players into the national team by giving them citizenship before they had earned it through the usual channels. Of the 20 players at the African Women’s Championship last year, five came from Brazil, three from Burkina Faso, two from Nigeria and one each from Spain, Cameroon and Nigeria.
Equatorial Guinea is in Group D with Brazil, Norway and Australia.