Libya's football team has arrived at its base in Equatorial Guinea, aiming to follow up a turbulent year that included the overthrow of a brutal dictator with success in the African Cup of Nations.

Libya faces tournament co-host Equatorial Guinea in Saturday's opening match after successfully negotiating a remarkable qualification campaign while the rebellion against Moammar Gadhafi raged at home.

The players looked tired but relaxed as they arrived Wednesday at the brand new hotel where they are staying in Bata. A handful of Equatorial Guinea soldiers and police were there as security.

Midfielder Walid al-Katroushi, who fought on the rebel front line, says the political turmoil has made the tournament ''much more important than just some football cup.''