The Cameroon Football Federation (FECAFOOT) on Friday announced the squad for their 2018 World Cup qualifiers against the Super Eagles of Nigeria on September 1 and September 4.
Completesportsnigeria.com’s IZUCHUKWU OKOS takes a look at five Indomitable Lions players who could cause damage in those matches…
1. BENJAMIN MOUKANDJO (Jiangsu Suning, China)
The Indomitable Lions will be led on the field by skipper Benjamin Moukandjo who plays his club football in the Chinese Super League (CSL).
This season Moukandjo has scored four league goals in five CSL matches, playing in every minute of those league appearances.
His last league goal was only on Saturday, 19 August in their 4-0 win over Yanbian Funde. HE has three assists to his credit and has had an 81.5% pass success rate.
Moukandjo was inspirational at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon where the Lions defeated Egypt to clinch the title.
Moukandjo and his teammates did not however have a great FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia where they were eliminated in the group stages after losing 3-1 and 2-0 respectively to Germany and Chile respectively, and secured a 1-1 draw against Australia.
2. CHRISTIAN BASSOGOG (Henan Jianye, China)
Christian Bassogog who was the Most Valuable Player at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations has underlined his readiness for the Uyo and Yaounde games with seven league goals this season for Chinese Super League side Henan Jianye in 18 league games.
Bassogog has won four Man of the Match awards already in those appearances and has had five assists to his credit.
The 21-year-old left footed right winger will be hoping to get the better of Super Eagles’ left-back on match days. His pace and trickery will be cause of worry for Elderson Echiejile. He has almost three shots per game which shows that his long range shots will be of interest to the Eagles’ defenders.
3. VINCENT ABOUBAKAR (Porto, Portugal)
Striker Vincent Aboubakar will be relied on to score the goals for the Lions in the two qualifying games.
So far in the Portuguese top flight, the striker has scored four goals in three matches.
Ahead of the games this weekend in the Portuguese Premier League, Aboubakar leads the players’ shots per game statistics with six.
The striker was also in the Team of the Week in Portugal for last weekend following his hat-trick in the 3-0 thrashing of visiting Moreirense on Sunday.
Aboubakar may have scored only one goal in the FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia this summer in the 3-1 defeat against Germany but his goal scoring threat cannot be denied. He will attempt to bully the Eagles defenders and has the propensity to drift to the wings.
4. SEBASTIAN SIANI (KV Oostende, Belgium)
Sebastian Siani is the engine of the Lions and will be locked in midfield battle with Mikel Obi.
So far this season, the 30-year-old star has played in three of his club’s league matches who are bottom of the table after matchday 4.
Siani is intelligent in his tackles and launches attacks from the middle of the pack although he can lose his cool sometimes. The midfielder has been booked once this season .
Siani was booked twice in the FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia this summer against Australia and Germany which initially raised doubts over his availability for the double headers against Nigeria.
5. FABRICE ONDOA (Sevilla, Spain)
Goalkeepers are hardly considered as one of the players to watch out for at big matches but there are exceptional few whose world class saves, organisation of their defence and communication are key to the success of their teams.
Some keepers could single-handedly decide the fate of teams by their saves and 21-year-old Fabrice Ondoa certainly can.
Cameroon have been reputed to produce some of Africa’s finest custodians like Antoine Bell, Thomas Nkono and Carlos Kameni. Ondoa is on the road to joining that illustrious list of keepers.
The keeper was in action in all of Cameroon’s six matches at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon where he conceded only three goals in six matches (aside t.from he penalty kicks against Senegal in the quarter-finals after a scoreless 90 minutes). He conceded six goals at the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia.
Ondoa has always been preferred to Ajax keeper Andre Onana in the team, the latter not even considered for the matches against Nigeria despite him playing in a big league in Europe and had the distinction of playing against Manchester United in the final of the UEFA Europa League in May.