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Profiling the AFCON teams: Cameroon

Cameroon have won five AFCON titles. (PHOTOS/AGENCIES)

Cameroon will be featuring in their 19th Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament and the third in a row since 2015. The Indomitable Lions have won five AFCON titles and enter into the 2019 tournament as the defending champions.

In the 2019 edition, Cameroon is in Group F alongside Ghana, Benin and Guinea-Bissau.

Cameroon did not enter into qualification for the first five AFCON tournaments between 1957 and 1965.

Their first attempt would be unsuccessful as they tried to book a spot at the 1968 edition in Ethiopia.

In 1970, Cameroon made their debut at the AFCON finals. However, the debut was short-lived as the Indomitable Lions failed to progress through Group A that also featured hosts-Ivory Coast, Sudan and Ethiopia, finishing third with 4 points.

They made a return for the 1972 AFCON, finishing third. After topping Group A, Cameroon lost 0-1 to Tunisia in the semifinals before defeating Zaire 5-2 in the third place playoff game.

Cameroon failed to reach the next four editions between 1974 and 1980, falling short in qualification. This was followed up by another-group stage elimination at the 1982 edition in Libya.

After three AFCON appearances, Cameroon would win their first title in Ivory Coast in 1984.

At the group stage in 84, the Indomitable Lions finished second behind Egypt to storm the semis where they overcame Egypt on penalties.

In the final, they defeated Nigeria 3-1 to seal their first triumph in the competition.

For the 1986 edition, Cameroons finished as runners ups after losing to hosts and eventual champions Egypt, on penalties.

Cameroon continued their brilliant run at the AFCON finals in 1988, winning their second title in the last three editions.

After finishing second in Group B, behind Nigeria, the Indomitable Lions went on to eliminate hosts-Morocco via a 1-0 score-line in the semifinals. In the finals, they overcame Nigeria 1-0 to win their second AFCON title.

The run of three consecutive final appearances came to an end in 1990 as Cameroon failed to get past the group stages of the tournament.

In 1992, Cameroon lost to Ivory Coast in the semis before losing to Nigeria in the third place playoff match to finish fourth.

As most of Cameroon’s golden generation retired, disaster struck and the Indomitable Lions failed to qualify for the 1994 finals in Tunisia. They would however bounce back in 1996, ending their participation at the group stage.

In 1998, Cameroon reached the knock-out stages of AFCON for the first time since finishing fourth in 1992. They topped Group A ahead of Burkina Faso, Guinea and Algeria before they were eliminated by DR Congo following a 0-1 loss.

In 2000, Cameroon would once again conquer Africa. After topping Group A, the Indomitable Lions eliminated Algeria and Tunisia in the quarter and semifinals respectively.

They then faced hosts Nigeria who they defeated on penalties, in the final, to win their third AFCON title.

Cameroon defeated Nigeria to win their 3rd AFCON in 2000.

In the 2002 edition in Mali, Cameroon successfully defended their title, defeating Senegal on penalties in the final to win their second consecutive title and 4th overall.

For both the 2004 and 2006 AFCONs, Cameroon was eliminated at the quarter finals’ stage.

In 2008, Cameroon would reach their 6th final in history. After finishing second in Group C behind Egypt, the Indomitable Lions defeated Tunisia and Ghana in the quarter and semifinals respectively to set up a meeting with Egypt in the final.

The final would see Cameroon lose 1-0 to Egypt, their second final loss in the competitions’ history.

In 2010, Cameroon reached the last 8 but lost 1-3 to Egypt after extra time to exit the competition.

The quarter final elimination in 2010 was followed with two unsuccessful attempts to qualify for the 2012 and 2013 editions.

The Indomitable Lions returned to the finals in 2015 but were eliminated at the Group stages after finishing bottom of Group D behind Ivory Coast, Guinea and Mali.

2017 would once again see Cameroon win the AFCON title, their 5th in history.

Cameroon finished second in Group A behind Burkina Faso and defeated Senegal and Ghana in the last 8 and 4 respectively.

In the final, the Indomitable Lions came from a goal down to overcome Egypt 2-1.

Coach

Clarence Seedorf

Seedorf  is a 43-year-old Dutch coach who has been the manager of Cameroon since 2018.

Seedorf has been Cameroon head coach since 2018.

He is regarded by many as one of the best midfielders of his generation, and has won domestic and continental titles while playing for clubs in the Netherlands, Spain, Italy and Brazil. He is considered one of the most successful players in UEFA Champions League history, as he is the first, and currently the only, player to have won the Champions League with three clubs – once with Ajax, in 1995, once with Real Madrid, in 1998 and twice with Milan, in 2003 and 2007.

At international level, he represented the Netherlands on 87 occasions, and took part at three UEFA European football championships (1996,2000,2004) and the 1998 FIFA World Cup, reaching the semi-finals of the latter three tournaments.

Seedorf was appointed the head coach of Milan in 2014, terminating his contract with Botafogo.

Seedorf was dismissed by Milan in June 2014 after just four months on the job.

Seedorf was appointed manager of China League One team Shenzhen FC in July 2016, but was replaced five months later by Sven-Goran Eriksson.

A year later Seedorf joined Brazilian club Atletico Paranaese as both a coach and a sporting director. Within a month the deal was cancelled after both parties failed to reach an agreement.

In February 2018, Seedorf was appointed as manager of Spanish club Deportivo La Coruna for the remainder of the 2017/18 season.

Cameroon appointed Seedorf as the manager of their men’s football national team in August 2018. He was joined by former teammate Patrick Kluivert as his assistant manager.

Star Player

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting

Choupo-Moting is a forward who features for Ligue One side Paris Saint-Germain.

Choupo-Moting began his career with Humburger SV, making 2007. He spent the 2009/10 season on loan at FC Nuremberg and in August 2011 he joined FSV Mainz 05. After three seasons with Mainz he moved on to Schalke 04 in August 2014. He became a regular for the Gelsenkirchen club, and made over 100 appearances, before joining Premier League side Stoke City in August 2017. In August 2018, he joined PSG.

Choupo-Moting has scored 64 goals in 345 club games and also netted 15 times in 50 appearances for Cameroon.

Choupo-Moting has scored 15 goals for Cameroon.

Projection: Quarter Finals

Cameroon’s fixtures at AFCON 2019

-Cameroon vs Guinea-Bissau, 25nd June
-Cameroon vs Ghana, 29th June
-Benin vs Cameroon, 02th July

Cameroon’s 23-man squad for AFCON 2019

Goalkeepers :

Andre Onana, Fabrice Ondoua, Idriss Carlos Kameni

Defenders

Fai Collins, Michael Ngadeu, Yaya Banana, Jean Armel Kana Biyik, Gaetan Bong, Ambroise Oyongo, Joyskim Dawa

Midfielders

Andre Franck Zambo Anguissa, Pierre Kunde Malong, Georges Constant Mandjeck, Arnaud Djoum, Wilfrid Kaptoum

Forwards

Stéphane Bahoken, Jacques Zoua, Clinton Njie, Christian Bassogog, Eric Maxime Choupo Moting, Joel Tagueu, Karl Toko Ekambi, Olivier Boumal

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