≡ Menu

War & Football 2010: Cameroon

Painted FanOperation Lion Heart

The General:

After a shaky start to the 2010 WCQ that only earned one point for Cameroon in the first two matches, the Indomitable Lions decided to part ways with German head coach Otto Pfister and decided to go French for the rest of the WCQ with new tactician 45-year-old Paul Le Guen.  Le Guen stabilized the team and led them to a strong WCQ finish.  And with past experience as the manager of Lyon, Rangers and Paris St. Germain, the man has the resume to back up the recent wave of success his Lions side has seen.

The Plan of Attack:

Cameroon plays a fairly classic version of the 4-4-1-1 with four back line fullbacks, two midfield wings, two center midfielders, a secondary striker, and striker up top.  Eto’o is obviously the finisher and both Songs play a valuable part of the team’s structure with former captain Rigobert Song at center back and Alexandre Song likely in the center midfield position.

The Key Troops:

The Song pair is a critical part of Cameroon’s potential success and Samuel Eto’o is a world renowned scorer.  Kameni is a seriously underrated keeper and should keep the Lions in close matches.  Pierre Achille Webo appears to be the formidable secondary striker and Jean Makoun and Stephane Mbia make up a respectable midfield unit along with Song.

The Mission:

Eto’o is one of the best African footballers in the world and is the first player to ever repeat as treble champion for two different teams in two different leagues.  To put it simply having the guy on your team makes them a potential streak buster.  Also having the Cup in South Africa means that Africa’s second best team (thanks to Essien’s injury) could make a serious run for the title.  Think I’m joking.  Maybe you should refer to 2002 World Cup when South Korea made it to the semis.

Potential Duds:

Samuel Eto’o is the main man on attack and the Inter and former Barca star scored nine goals in eleven matches for his Indomitable Lions this WCQ.  But one thing that he recently did that grinds one Yank’s gears is that he pouted when Roger Milla was critical of his international play compared to league success.  Eto’o even claimed that he might not play at all because he was so insulted.  You are the captain of your squad and a leader of your nation.  Even saying such a thing is unacceptable.  Karma could kill Cameroon’s chances.

Final War Movie Rank:

Cameroon will need to play as a collective team with the heart of an indomitable lion if they want to advance far this World Cup.  I think A Mighty Heart is a fitting movie title for such a victorious team on African soil.  But most likely Cameroon will become Lions for Lambs this summer if they lose to Japan or Denmark.  The team needs to advance to at least the second round.  And Eto’o needs to put his ego to the side to do that.

Creative Commons License photo credit: manbeastextraordinaire