Indomitable Lions’ camp serene ahead of opening tie

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting

Cameroon's coach #00 Rigobert Song (right) watches Cameroon's forward #13 Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting during a training session at the Al Sailiya SC site in Doha on November 21, 2022, ahead of the Qatar 2022 World Cup football match between Cameroon and Switzerland.
 

Photo credit: Issouf Sanogo | AFP

What you need to know:

  • The Indomitable Lions failed to qualify for the 2006 edition, they finished 31 and 32 in 2010 in South Africa and 2014 in Brazil, respectively, when the team last appeared at the tournament.
  • Yet, Eto’o, an ambassador for Qatar Legacy, believes "Cameroon will win the World Cup final against Morocco" on December 18.

There is spirit of serenity in the Cameroon national team — the Indomitable Lions — camp a day to their first match at the 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar, according to a member of staff and a player.

Indomitable Lions’ assistant coach Sebastien Migne and central defender Jean-Charles Castelletto said during a press conference on Monday in Doha that the team was in high spirits ahead of their Group “G” opener against Switzerland Thursday.

“There is serenity, and the team is ready to do its best,” Migne, a former coach of Kenya’s national team Harambe Stars, told reporters at a press conference after the Indomitable Lions’ training at the Al Sahilia Sports Club training pitch in Doha.

Since the dramatic defeat of Algeria to qualify for World Cup, thanks to a last-minute goal by attacker Karl Toko Ekambi in March, coach Rigobert Song’s charges have been less convincing. The team failed to win all their friendly matches in the build-up to the tournament.

Cameroon are in Qatar without dependable defender Michael Ngadeu Ngadjui who was pivotal in the playoffs. Song dropped Ngadeu in favour Nicolas Nkoulou who had not been with the team since announcing retirement from international duty after they lifted the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations trophy.

Though used to the playstyle of Ngadeu, centre back Jean-Charles Castelletto said he, like other players, have been adapting to Nkoulou, though football pundits are questioning his current fitness.

“They are two different players but I have adapted to both. It is continuity. We are all playing for Cameroon,” Castelleto said during the press conference that was streamed live on the team’s social media page.

Eighth appearance

Cameroon Football Federation Samuel Eto’o has set an ambitious goal for the team to win the title.

Cameroon will making their eight appearance at the World Cup, the highest number by an African side. 

Though 43rd in the world in the latest Fifa rankings, Cameroonians, including E’to’o are confident Song and boys will bring home the coveted trophy.

The last time Cameroon won a  match at the World Cup was in 2002 when both Eto’o and Song were still players.

The Indomitable Lions failed to qualify for the 2006 edition, they finished 31 and 32 in 2010 in South Africa and 2014 in Brazil, respectively, when the team last appeared at the tournament.

Yet, Eto’o, an ambassador for Qatar Legacy, believes "Cameroon will win the World Cup final against Morocco" on December 18.

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