Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions defeated Moldova 1-0 in Yaounde in their final pre-World Cup friendly, which also served as an opportunity for fans to bid ‘farewell’ to the squad that leaves the country on Sunday for Brazil.
Edgar Salli scored Cameroon’s goal at the 30th minute of the match following a cross from the right flank by the talented Benjamin Moukandjo.
There was little else to write home about the game in which the Cameroon players were clearly under instruction not to over commit, in order to avoid last minute injuries.
The Indomitable Lions ‘traditionally’ play an exhibition game where the 23-man squad is divided into two camps for a show, ostensibly to allow the fans say farewell and bless the team. This year officials of the football federation decided to organise an international friendly instead.
Head coach Volker Finke rested the team captain, Samuel Eto’o, as well as Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting, the most prolific scorer since they started preparing for the World Cup last May.
However, the German trainer started Aurelien Chedjou, who had been carrying an injury thus missing Cameroon’s previous warm up matches. Chedjou was paired with Nicolas N’Koulou at the centre of defence. Henri Bedimo started at left-back while Allan Nyom got the nod as right-back. The latter missed a sitter towards the end of the game drawing scorn and catcalls from fans who were at the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium.
Alex Song anchored midfield alongside Enoh Eyong and Landry N’guemo but the energy and harrying displayed in the game against Germany (in which this trio featured together in the 2nd half) was absent.
In all it was a flat performance only spiced (once in a while) by the dribbling from Moukandjo who started as part of a forward trio including Salli and Achille Webo. The
There were numerous substitutions but this didn’t change the game whose flow was seriously hampered by the poor turf that gave an awkward bounce to the ball.
Moldova camped in their half of the field for most of the contest. They stepped up in the second half and came close to an unexpected equaliser from a well taken free-kick in the final minutes of the game.
Cameroon’s Prime Minister Philemon Yang handed over a Cameroon flag to the country’s German-born coach at the end of the game. The team departs for Brazil on Sunday