What you need to know:
- “The match was not easy but the players tried their best. There were minor errors which they corrected. The World Cup is not easy for everyone,” he told Nation Sport.
- The fan said he is hopeful Cameroon will advance to the next round of the global tournament. “We are not afraid of any opponent…The Lions will win over Brazil,” Jilla said.
Cameroon have kept alive hopes of qualifying for the Round of 16 at the ongoing 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar after coach Rigobert Song’s charges fought back from two goals down to draw 3-3 with Serbia in their second Group ‘G’ game.
The five-time Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) champions opened scores at the 29th minute thanks to a Jean Charles Castelleto, but the Serbs equalized and increased tally just before both teams went into first-half stoppage time at the Al Janoub Stadium.
Back in the Cameroon capital, Yaounde, there was mortuary silence at the fan zone of the Yaounde City Council as the Cameroonians struggled to fight back.
Thousands of fans gathered at the fan zone where they watched the game. Some angry fans immediately started vacating the fan zone when the Serbs scored the second goal.
The fielding of Afcon 2022 top scorer, Vincent Aboubakar, who came to reinforce the attack also revived hopes for the fans there — and the Al Nassr forward, nicknamed ‘Abou Chou’ (darling Aboubakar) during this year’s Afcon did not disappoint his fans.
He combined his talent and experience and broke through the defence of the Eagles to net a second for Cameroon, sending fans into ecstasy.
Initially ruled as an offside by the assistant referee, VAR validated the goal adding the excitement of the fans back home.
Later, the talismanic attacker will again have another opportunity to score, but preferred to hand the ball to captain Eric Maxim Choupo Moting who leveled scores to 3-3, sparking more wilder celebrations at the fan zone.
Fans sang, danced, some rolled on the ground and others offered booze to other fans as a sign of celebration following the leveler by the Bayern Munich attacker.
Jilla Martial, a well-known fan of the team who goes by the popular name “Five-star General Mascot” of the Indomitable Lions, was among the fans at the Yaounde City Council fan zone.
With his trademark motor bike covered in national colours and two flags hung on it, he was joined by other fans as they sang and danced.
“The match was not easy but the players tried their best. There were minor errors which they corrected. The World Cup is not easy for everyone,” he told Nation Sport.
The fan said he is hopeful Cameroon will advance to the next round of the global tournament. “We are not afraid of any opponent…The Lions will win over Brazil,” Jilla said.
Dieudonne, another fan and an employee of a waste disposal company in the capital, who identified himself just by the one name, shared same optimism.
“We wished for a victory against Serbia, but this was not the case. However, the players did their best, coming from two goals down to equalise… we (Cameroon) are not yet out. Everything is possible,” he said.
It, however, was disappointment for Michel Marius, another enthusiastic fan of the team, who abandoned his business to come watch the match at the Yaounde City Council fan zone.
“We expected more from the team… If Andre Onana was there, Cameroon will not have conceded up to three goals,” he said.