The Intermediate Lions of Cameroon have progressed to the knockout stages of the ongoing African Nations Championship after playing out a goalless game against Burkina Faso in their final group game at the Ahmadou Ahidjo stadium on Sunday.
Cameroon needed just a point to progress to the next round of the competition and to get the job done, head coach Martin Ndtoungou Mpile made three changes to the side that was held by Burkia Faso last Wednesday.
Etambe Ngombe was brought back to the squad to partner Banga Bindjeme as Junior Ndedi was dropped to the bench.
Fabrice Onana was also brought in the bring the much-needed spark in midfield as Junior Mfede dropped out while Ngon A Tiati started upfront ahead of Alfred Meyong as Man Yrke and Ako Assomo kept their places. There was still no place for team captain Jacques Zoua.
Caleroon started strong with their go-to-man Banga Bindjeme driving the testing the Burkinabe goalkeeper in the first minute with a long-range drive.
But the Stallions had the best chance in the opening ten minutes when striker Mohammed Ouattara somehow managed to fluff his lines when clean on goal from a cross.
Moments later, it was Ismahila Ouedraogo, unmarked at the penalty spot placed a weak shot that failed to test Cameroon goalkeeper Haschou Kerido.
On the half hour mark, it was Ouattara again who almost caught Haschou Kerido on his near post with a diving header but the PWD goalkeeper was attentive enough to keep the attempt out.
Cameroon’s first real chance of the game came two minutes before the break when Ngon A Tiati leapt above the Burkinabe defence from a Thierry Tchuente free kick but his header could only find the side netting.
Cameroon got the game under control in the second half but the final ball let them down on several occasions just as in their two previous games.
The best chance of the half came on 65 minutes when striker Man Yrke played Ngon A Tiati through on goal but the winger’s scuffed shot failed to trouble the Burkina Faso goalkeeper.
Both teams became rusty in possession as the game wore on with their finishing leaving much to be desired until the final blast of the referee’s whistle.
Cameroon progress through to the quarter finals as runners-up in Group A and will face the winner of Group B on Saturday January 30 in Japoma, Douala.
Mali who edged Zimbabwe to claim top spot in the group return to Yaounde where they will face the runners up of Group B in the first quarter final next Saturday.
Goalkeepeer: Hashou Kerrido
Defenders: Junior Etame Ngombe, Banga Bindjeme, Serge Andoulou(Steve Kegne 31’), Hassana Mamoudou.
Midfielders: Félix Oukine, Thierry Tchuente( Penda Fils 62’), Fabrice Onana( E. Kofana 77’)
Forwards: Ako’o Assomo, Ngon A Tiati , Man Yrke
Defenders: Soumaila Ouattara, Sami Hien, Issouf Sosso, Issiaka Ouedraogo,
Midfielders: Somgogma Nikiema, Ismahila Ouedrahogo( P. Nunno 62’), Jean Kiendrebedgo (Kadeba A. 78’)
Forwards:Sansah Dah(Pitroipa Clement 73’), Hamed Belem, Mohamed Ouattara