Group B: Cameroon       Castellano   Page 2

Argentina  2

Austria  2

Belgium  2

Brazil  2

Bulgaria  2

Cameroon  2

Chile  2

Colombia  2

Croatia  2

Denmark  2

England  2

France  2

Germany  2

Iran  2

Italy  2

Jamaica  2

Japan  2

México  2

Morocco  2

Netherlands  2

Nigeria  2

Norway  2

Paraguay  2

Romania  2

Saudi Arabia  2

Scotland  2

South Africa 2

South Korea

Spain  2

Tunisia  2

United States  2

Yugoslavia  2

Fédération Camerounaise de Football 

Coach: Claude LE ROY

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vs. AUSTRIA

11.06.98 Toulouse

vs. ITALY

17.06.98 Montpellier

vs. CHILE

23.06.98 Nantes

Team Colors: Green shirt , Red pants

Confederation: CAF

Fourth participation in World Cup (1982,90,94,98)

Quarter-finalists in the 1990 World Cup in Italy

Two-time winners of the African Nations Cup (1984,1988)

African Nations Cup finalists twice, in 1972 and 1986

Key players: F Patrick Mboma (J-League, Japan).

G Jacques Songo'o, Deportívo La Coruña,

F Salomon Olembe, England

Rigobert Song ©AFP

Will the Indomitable Lions celebrate in France?  ©AFP

Keep an Eye on: Patrick Mboma: Could be Cameroon's big success.Scorer of five goals in the qualifiers.

Salomon Olembe: Brimming with precocious talent.

Jean-Jacques Etame: Best player in game against England.

Analysis:It is a young team, needs experience. It will get only three games of it this time around, but the Indomitable Lions will make someone earn their keep because of the speed they play with.

Lacks cohesion. A quarterfinalist in '90, but a mess four years later in USA. Which team shows up?

History: It was the Germans who introduced football to Cameroon around 1880, but the first official match was not played until 1926 -- a game between a team formed by French colonials and one comprised of local residents. The first clubs, The Dragons, Indigenous Stars and L'Ecole Normal were formed in Yaounde. The Indigenous Stars, comprised entirely of local players, dominated the early years and did not lose until November 11 1930, when they were finally beaten by Canon Yaounde.

A championship was started, first based in the region around Yaounde, then spreading to Douala and progressively improved to involve the rest of the country. The competition was not affiliated with the African Football Confederation until after independence in 1960. Oryx Douala dominated the early years of the championship and won the African Champions Cup in 1965. That win set the pattern for a domination of continental club competitions, notably Canon Yaounde winning the African Champions Cup in 1971, 1978 and 1980, Union Douala winning the same championship in 1979 and Tonnerre Yaounde (winners of the African Cup Winners Cup in 1975).

The national team enjoyed similar success, winning the African Nations championship twice, in 1984 and 1988, and making the quarter-finals of the 1990 World Cup finals, where Roger Milla was star for the Indomitable Lions with four goals for a team that also included big names, such as Thomas Nkono and François Omam Biyik. The Cameroons were eliminated 3-2 by England after winning the opening match of the tournament 1-0 against defending champions Argentina. In 1994, the legendary Milla (winner of the Golden Ball in Africa in both 1976 and 1990) played in the World Cup finals, scoring at the age of 42 against Russia -- the oldest player ever to score in the tournament finals.

Once in the vanguard of the great African march on world football as the team that announced the intentions of a continent with victory over Argentina in the opening game of Italia 90, the Indomitable Lions are no longer the region's greatest power. Evidence of that decline was clear in the ecstatic reaction of the Italians to being grouped with Cameroon, Chile and Austria. Indeed, Cameroon appeared to be in the midst of a painful transition in the dull 2-0 defeat by England at Wembley last month, a far cry from the swashbuckling heroes who almost prevented England from reaching the 1990 semi-finals. There is no one with the charisma of Roger Milla, power of Emmanuel Kunde or attacking guile of Cyrille Makanaky. They are a young team, and expect them to exit early.

 

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POSITION NAME AGE CAPS

G Vincent Ongandzi 21 26

G Jacques Songo'o 35 70  

D Ernest Etchi 19 16

D Raymond Kalla 24 36

D Tobie Bayard Mimboe 23 36

D Rigobert Song 22 41

D Pierre Wome 20 19

D Placide Zoalande 16 1  

M Romarin Billong 27 11

M Jean-Jacques Etame 31 2

M Samuel Ipoua 24 1

M Cyrille Mangan 21 17

M Saloman Olembe 16 2

M Bernard Tchoutang 21 20

F Marc-Vivien Foe 22 26

F Joseph-Desire Job 19 1

F Patrick Mboma 27 12

F Jean-Jacques Misse 33 38

F Hecto Moukoko 20 12

F Didier Nguijol 23 5

F Geremi Njitap 18 21

F Souffo Patrick 22 2

F Alfonse Tchami 28 36

F Joseph-Marie Tchango 19 20

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