Tuesday 20 February 2018

World Cup team preview: Cameroon

Cameroon will be competing at their seventh World Cup Finals
Cameroon will be competing at their seventh World Cup Finals

With 25 days until the World Cup, we still have 25 teams to preview for Brazil. Today it is the Indomitable Lions as Cameroon will look to re-create World Cup magic.

Group F: Croatia, Mexico, Brazil

Tournament odds: 500/1

The Cameroon squad may not have the calibre of player as previous World Cup campaigns, reflected by their long price for the tournament.

Samuel Eto’o is in the twilight of his career and without an out-an-out playmaker they may lack the pace and guile to breakdown the more organised defences.

That said, their defence looks pretty sound, with Alexandre Song and Eyong Enoh offering protection in midfield.

Expectations are lower than perhaps any other World Cup campaign and their only match of 2014 was a 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Portugal.

One saving grace may be the fact that they play Brazil in their final group game, by which time the Samba Boys may well be qualified for the knock-out stages.

How they got here

Cameroon won the African Qualifying Group I, then defeated Tunisia in two-leg playoff.

The first-leg was goalless but they proved far too strong in the second-leg, emerging victorious 4-1 with a brace from former Aston Villa player Jean Makoun and Pierre Webo and Benjamin Moukandjo also on the scoresheet.

Key Player

Samuel Eto’o is the most high-profile player in the squad, but his influence on proceedings may not be what it once was.

Stéphane Mbia,  one of Harry Redknapp’s numerous high-priced flops at QPR last season, could have a far bigger role in the team in Brazil.

Sevilla's Cameroonian midfielder Stephane Mbia

In an attempt to lower their wage bill, Mbia was loaned out to Sevilla, where he’s blossomed and helped the Spanish club win the Europa League, including a crucial goal in the second-leg.

Mbia didn’t feature prominently in qualifying, but based on form deserves to crack the Cameron lineup..

Something you might not know about Cameroon

More than 30pc of the total population lives at less than €0.92  per day.

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