ANDThe surname Engonga is synonymous with football.Vicente Engonga Nguema, who died in 2014, started a saga, instilling the love for this sport to his four children, Vicente, Julio, Rafael and Óscar. The latter is the father of Igor, who together with his cousin Joshua represent the third generation of the Engonga. "We hope that in the future there will be many more and that the saga will continue, my cousin is also young and is progressing, it does not matter to me," Engonga "has always been related to football and I try to give it continuity," Igor says.
Óscar tells how the history of the Engonga was forged: "When Equatorial Guinea was a Spanish colony, my father arrived in Santander, where he started his career in Racing, our family has always been linked to football, because it is what we have seen since We were born. " Vicente abounds about it: "By tradition, the surname Engonga and football are very close. My brothers and I started playing at a young age and I always remember with a ball on my feet"
"Igor has lived it since he was very small, he always accompanied me to workouts and showered with all the equipment, it was like one more in the dressing room.We are very proud of him, because he has been the first and only member of the family to have worn the team jersey. Not even his grandfather did it"explains Óscar" It's a pride to wear it, because I represent the surname Engonga ", adds the protagonist.
All of them have gone through the gymnastics of Torrelavega. In fact, in 1985 the four brothers came to play together in a game against the Arenas: "It is a special club for the family, because it has been our cradle. I had the chance to make my debut in Segunda B and I will always be grateful ", says Igor, 23, born in Mazcuerras, Cantabria, and who arrived at Almería B in 2016, from Portugalete, his next logical goal is to debut with the first team.
Vicente was recently named federative delegate of the Spanish national team. Before, he became the furthest one in the world of football: "I wish I could follow in his footsteps, I know it's complicated but I work for it", insists Igor … defined by his uncle: "He is a footballer who is eager to succeed. I would like to see him soon in Second or First, because he is a great center. I'm flattered that my nephew wants to follow in my footsteps"
Vicente developed most of his career in the top category, where he played in teams like Valladolid, Celta, Valencia and Mallorca. In addition, he was international with Spain and came to participate in the Eurocup of 2000. After retiring, he moved to the bench, where among others he directed the Guinea national team in 2008.
Julio, who is currently a director in the Cantabrian Federation, went through teams of Segunda B. His twin Rafael died in 2013. He worked in gymnastics and in several Third Teams, an aspect that he combined with his work in construction.The younger brother, Óscar, played a total of three matches in Primera, with Valladolid and Racing. In 2003, years before his brother, he accepted the position of coach.
Igor was summoned for the first time with Guinea when he was 18 years old:"I was in class and my cell phone rang, and when I took it, they told me that if I was willing to travel to play a friendly game against Spain, I did not hesitate and traveled on the same plane as the members of La Roja.. In that match I could not make my debut, but I enjoyed one of the best experiences I've had in football. "
"I had the chance to play with Guinea, but circumstances did not come in. Luckily, years later I was able to play for Spain, Igor was the only Engonga to be an absolute international with Guinea.I am convinced that his grandfather would be proud of him. One of the thorns that remains for me is that my father has not seen any of his children representing the national team", completes Vicente.
Except the grandfather and Uncle Julio, both forwards, the rest of Igor's relatives were midfielders.Following the tradition of his predecessors began playing in the midfield, but now he does as central. In that position he plays in Almería B and in the national team… giving continuity to the saga.
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