Despite a difficult preparation, the defending champions are determined to qualify on Saturday.
Despite the late start of the training and the absence of valuable sparring partners, the coach of the Indomitable Lions, Carl Enow Ngatchu says he is confident his team is going to obtain victory against Ethiopia on Saturday and qualify for the 2015 African Games to take place in Congo Republic.
“We are going to do everything possible to win so as to be able to defend our title in Congo,” he said. He admitted that Ethiopia was a formidable football side; reason why the goals came only in the last ten minutes of the away leg in Addis Ababa but said Cameroon is going to carry the day. “It is going to be a tough game for both sides but I believe at the end Cameroon is going to have the upper hand.
The feeling of optimism is shared by his players who say they are waiting for Saturday to prove their mettle. It would be recalled the match counts for the return leg of the qualifiers for the 2015 African games. In the away leg in Addis Ababa a fortnight ago, the Lionesses took a good option towards qualification by beating Ethiopia 2-1. A simple draw or victory will therefore be enough to enable Cameroon sail through.
It is worthy to note that Cameroon won the gold medals during the last edition of the games in Maputo and it will therefore be awkward for the Lionesses not to defend their title in Congo.
The Lionesses had their last training session on Thursday at the Ahmadou Ahidjo stadium working on short passes within a reduced space, tactical options and the execution of penalty kicks. In the afternoon, it was the turn of the Ethiopians to make a reconnaissance visit to the venue of the event at Mfandena. The Ethiopians arrived in the country on Wednesday, April 8th via the Douala International airport.
The delegation comprising 18 players and 8 eight officials rallied the nation’s capital by Camairco flight the same day. According to the head of the delegation, Asfaw Lulesged Begashaw, they are not in Cameroon for tourism but to obtain qualification.
There are concerns about the fitness of the Ahmadou Ahidjo stadium to host the game given destruction caused on the pitch and reserve benches by the heavy down pour that interrupted the Apejes-Tonnerre encounter last week.
However, the director of the stadium says they are working frantically to make the pitch ready for competition. Meanwhile, in order to enable people to attend the match en masse and cheer the Lionesses to victory, entry into the stadium will be free of charge.