Cameroon cannot relax against Cape Verde

Cameroon cannot relax against Cape Verde

Already qualified for the round of 16 of the African Cup of Nations (CAN 2022), Cameroon is playing its third Group A match against Cape Verde on Monday 17 January. Against an opponent who has already caused problems for the Indomitable Lions, coach Toni Conceiçao hammers it: his team must keep their concentration and still win. The rest of the CAN depends on it.

From our special correspondent in Yaoundé,

The best attack of this beginning of AFCON 2022 – six goals in two matches, including four signed Vincent Aboubakar – will she still blackmail the Olembé stadium? Cameroon returns to the new stadium on Monday 17 January for its third and final match of the first round, against Cape Verde. And even if the organizing country has already his ticket for the round of 16, a new victory with a few goals would be ideal.

Because in this competition with 24 nations at the start, the ranking of each group is never completely fixed before the end of the first round. Leader of group A with 6 points, Cameroon can always, in case of disappointment, demote to second or even third place. And if that happened, the Indomitable Lions would have to go into exile elsewhere than at the Olembé stadium for their round of 16. Indeed, the team that will finish first in group A will be the only one guaranteed to play in this place.

Conceição will perhaps spin

Beyond a matter of stage, finishing first on a solid board is ” important “because it’s the best way to” build confidence for the future of the competition, explained Cameroon coach Toni Conceição on the eve of the match against Cape Verde. The coach assures him, his men are ” ready », « concentrates ” and ” demanding of themselves “.

We want to give 100% in every game. We are ready for it confirms Collins Fai. Double decisive passer against Ethiopia, the right-back admits that the Cameroonians have “ made a lot of mistakes in the last two games “and want” correct them “.

Asked about his tactical intentions, Toni Conceição plans to modify his team a little: “ Some players could rest, especially those who took a warning. But I don’t think the change will be very profound, given the opponent. » « The best team will be lined up ” and ” there will be no relaxation “, he insists.

Cape Verde, a bad memory for Cameroon

Faced with the Indomitable Lions at home, the Cape Verdeans are not starting favorites. Nor do they arrive as designated victims, quite the contrary. Firstly because from an accounting point of view, after a victory (1-0 against Ethiopia) and a loss (0-1 against Burkina Faso), the Blue Sharks are clearly in the running for a place among the round of 16. And also because Cameroon haven’t been very happy against Cape Verde lately.

During the CAN 2022 qualifiers, in which Cameroon still participated despite its automatic qualification as an organizer, the Cape Verdeans came to seek a draw at Ahmadou-Ahidjo (0-0 in November 2019) before the take home (3-1 in March 2021). And the Cameroonians have not forgotten either that their double confrontation with Cape Verde had been their fatal during the CAN 2013 qualifiers (2-0, 1-2 in September and October 2012).

Humberto Bettencourt, assistant coach Bubista, does not forget these feats of arms. ” It is important to remember past encounters he says. But he adds: Tomorrow’s game (Monday) will be completely different. »

Cape Verde intends to stick to its usual game plan and hopes “ overtake the opponent by detecting his weakest points “. ” There are very few, but they do exist. And we will do what is necessary to exploit them warns Bettencourt. A message that the Indomitable Lions have probably not missed.