The Indomitable Lions of Cameroon kick started their TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2021 campaign on a winning note stopping a hard fighting Burkina Faso 2-1 on Sunday.
It was skipper Vincent Aboubakar’s two well converted penalties that made the difference at the Olemne Stadium in Yaounde after the Burkinabe had taken the lead.
Besides the win, the Indomitable Lions who are hungry to add an AFCON silverware to their trophy cupboard rewrote history when they remained unbeaten in Yaounde in 33 years. The last time Cameroon lost in Yaounde was in 1988.
Toni Conceicao is not bothered about the history side but what the team executes on the field. “It is good to always win the opening match because it sets the tone for the tournament, but we need to take every match differently and with seriousness,” added the coach.
Conceicao repeated that the team must control it’s emotions because they are playing at home and must concentrate. “We have our next game against Ethiopia on Thursday and we must approach that match like we are going for a final. Every game here is very important,” added the coach.
Former star and captain of the Cameroon team and now President of the Cameroon Football Federation, Samuel Eto'o also made it clear that the Indomitable Lions Liones showed what it means to be Cameroonian on the opening day of the tournament.
“The energy of Olembe Stadium, the lair of the Indomitable Lions, has been truly unmatched. From the celebrations, to the ceremony, to our first win, we showed what it means to be Cameroonian,” said Eto'o on his twitter handle.
With 24 teams taking part in this biennial African showpiece it remains to be seen if the hosts Cameroon can maintain their unbeaten record in Yaounde and go on to win the trophy.
The Indomitable Lions of Cameroon have lifted the AFCON trophy five times in 1984, 1988, 2000, 2002 and 2017. It is only record holders Egypt who have won the AFCON trophy (seven times) more than Cameroon.