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Cameroon ready to roar in Qatar World Cup 2022

Jeffrey Monkhouse

Updated: Oct 20, 2022 06:31

United Cameroon singing from same song sheet


Cameroon football embarking on new era

Coach Song forging team in own image

Vincent Aboubakar poised for prominent role

Over the past few years, Cameroonian football has seen significant upheaval. First, in December 2021, Cameroonian Football Federation President Samuel Eto'o, the nation's all-time leading scorer with 56 goals, was elected with the declared intention of "bringing football back to the footballers."

Rigobert Song, a former talismanic captain of Cameroon who holds the record for most appearances with 137, took over as coach of the national team in February of this year. His purpose? bring back some prestige to a country that did not participate in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Cameroon will compete on football's biggest stage for the seventh time in their history in Qatar after a spectacular qualification campaign that ended in a razor-thin play-off triumph over Algeria - a record for an African nation. And skipper Vincent Aboubakar and his teammates are completely committed to continuing the legacy of their forebears by leaving a lasting impression on the competition.


Cameroon's manager Rigobert Song (C) talks to his players after the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 qualifying third round football match between Algeria and Cameroon at the Stade omnisport de Douala stadium in Douala, Cameroon on March 25, 2022. (Photo by Daniel BELOUMOU OLOMO / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL BELOUMOU OLOMO/AFP via Getty Images) will introduce you the Cameroon national football team...

Cameroon’s Group G fixtures


24 November, 13:00 (local time)


28 November, 13:00 (local time)


2 December, 22:00 (local time)

Song’s approach and tactics


On the football field, forwards who came into contact with Rigobert Song immediately learned that the former Indomitable Lions captain was a tough, competitive defender with what his countrymen refer to as a "hemlé" perspective. The head coach wants to instill in his players a spirit of bravery.

Song like short, vertical passes and a 4-3-3 formation. His squad is built on a rock-solid defense, which is complemented by speed down the wings from Collins Fai and Nouhou Tolo. Song chooses midfielders who can utilize their ball abilities during transitional stages, while striker Karl Toko Ekambi frequently lowers to reclaim possession deep or provide an additional option.

Overall, Song takes a pragmatist stance that is centered on discrediting Cameroon's rivals, which frequently results in performances that fall under the solid category as opposed to the expressive one.

Key player: Vincent Aboubakar


The captain of Cameroon as well as one of the team's most technically adept players is Vincent Aboubakar. The tenacious 30-year-old native of Garoua, whose lengthy international career began in 2010 alongside national team mainstays like Eto'o and Pierre Webo, is about to play in his third World Cup.

Now it is Aboubakar’s turn to serve as a role model for a squad in which many of the key players will be participating in their first World Cups. After netting eight times to top the scoring charts at the 2021 CAF Africa Cup of Nations, staged this year, the confident striker is unlikely to be fazed by his leadership responsibilities, nor by the challenges that await his team in Qatar, as he recently explained to FIFA+.

“We won’t be afraid of Brazil,” he said. “We, however, are also a big team, representing a big country, and we believe we can go far. We let our football do the talking. This tournament features the best teams in the world, and we have to prepare well in order to compete.”

One to watch: Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa


Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa has been in excellent form for Napoli in the first quarter of the Serie A season, a fact noted by the man in charge of Cameroon. “Anguissa will be very useful for us in November,” said Song at the team’s recent training camp in Korea Republic.

Inventiveness, improvisation and exceptional speed of execution are among the attributes that have ensured Anguissa of a place in his country’s starting XI. His principal quality, however, is an ability to extricate himself from pressure situations via outstanding dribbling skills – a priceless asset for a holding midfielder.

Now 26, Anguissa has matured considerably as a player in the period since a move to the Premier League with Fulham in 2018, and his determination, strong personality and resourcefulness are hugely influential on Cameroon’s style of play. He repeatedly regains possession for his team and maintains an extraordinarily disciplined approach to his role.

Cameroon’s World Cup history

Cameroon are one of just three African nations to have reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup – alongside Senegal and Ghana – a feat they famously achieved in 1990, in Italy. The Indomitable Lions, whose line-up included the irrepressible striker Roger Milla, shocked the world in their opening match of that tournament, beating defending champions Argentina, who featured the great Diego Maradona, courtesy of a Francois Omam-Biyik header – a goal that entered African footballing folklore.

Since that remarkable run to the last eight, Cameroon’s World Cup campaigns have looked eerily similar, with group-stage eliminations in 1994, 1998, 2002, 2010 and 2014.

After failing to qualify in 2018, could Cameroon emulate the beloved 1990 team and finally give their fans something to shout about in Qatar?

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