BY Lionel Tchoungui Bidzogo-The stunning performance of the rejuvenated Indomitable Lions squad, led by Stephane Mbia is gradually rekindling nostalgic feelings in the minds of many lovers of the football game across the national territory.
After the Lubumbashi game, many are those who predicted that the Yaounde outing would be an unfavourable one for the Indomitable Lions, as they held that the Elephants, deemed more experienced, were going to take advantage of the puerile nature of the squad to defeat them on home soil.
The first minutes saw a brilliant Ivorian side led by Gervinho and Yaya Toure, who tried to destabilise Cameroon’s defense line who their tactical penetrations. At the 17th minute, striker Njie Clinton, opened scores for Cameroon.Three minutes later, he would move up and score the second goal, but it would be denied by the referee.
After some exciting minutes of play, Yaya Toure would equalize for the Ivorian side. At the 36th minute, play maker, Maxime Tchoupo Moting, would break through the Ivorian defense and pass the ball to Vincent Aboubakar, who would score the second goal for Cameroon.
Over and over, both teams would thrill the crowds with spectacular actions, but their actions would be fruitless. At half time, Cameroon leads the game. In the second half, keeper, Fabrice Ondoa, would show proof of his skill by saving two face to face duels.
At the 53rd minute of play, Aboubakar would slip another goal onto the Ivorian keeper’s net. 24 minutes later, thanks to a clinical pass from Aboubakar, fitted to Clinton Njie’s chest, Cameroon would record her fourth goal for the day.
The 4-1 defeat inflicted on the Ivorian football squad at the Amadou Ahidjo stadium in Yaounde has created a shift in the paradigm. When one has to delve into the annals of history, the defeat is the highest meted out on the Ivorian side by the Lions. They now lead group D, with 6 points followed by the D.R. Congo who equally won their second match.
Speaking at an after match press conference, Team Captain, Stephane Mbia, says much still needs to be done. To him, it is very important for them to better their style of play, especially seeing that their squad is made up of very young players.
Ivorian Captain, Yaya Toure, is of the opinion that they would have to prepare better in order to win their other matches. “In the first half, we tried to control the game. We conceded so many occasions but were unable to transform them into goals”, he added.
At the end of the match the euphoria on the streets of Cameroon as a whole was immense. Blowing of whistles, beating of drums, drinking and dancing to the rhythm of various melodies characterized the celebrations, reminiscent of the episodes recorded at the close of the opening game at the Italia 90 World Cup.
The decision to reconstruct the squad by German technician, Volker Finke, considered by many as risky has won the appreciation of many Cameroonians.
Speaking to lions4life.com after the match, a fan, Ebonda Nkoa, holds that the players are showing proof of patriotism and love of the game.
“Though young, their courage, understanding of each other and hunger for victory is impressive. For once, the coach has been left to do his job without any external pressures as was the case in the yesteryears.
The dismal performance of the team in Brazil has really helped in the discovery of our talents. I had lost hope in the squad after the world cup, but these two matches have given me reason to revisit my decision”, he adds.
The squad it should be noted is made up of revelations, with the most outstanding being striker, Clinton Njie, recording three goals in the recent encounters, and the 18 year old keeper, Fabrice Ondoa.