On August 23, Indomitable Lions head coach Antonio ‘Toni’ Conceiçao presented in terms of battles, the matches against Malawi, Mozambique and Côte d’Ivoire awaiting his team within the framework of Qatar 2022 Qualifiers.
28 players have just been called up to start the qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™. Among them are two local players, goalkeeper Narcisse Nlend and striker Lambert Areina, of Coton Sport de Garoua, semi-finalist of the TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup.
The Cameroonian team awaits Malawi on September 3, and aims to then defeat the other opponents of the pool. “The first game that concerns me is Malawi. This is a team that is theoretically weaker than Côte d’Ivoire and Cameroon, but which comes to Yaounde to complicate things for us, to cause us problems. It’s a team that is very strong physically, that gives everything, fights for all the balls. We will have to put a tactical strategy with the creativity of our players to make the difference. Nowadays there are no easy matches. A lot of difficulties are expected against Malawi, Mozambique and Cote d’Ivoire. But we are prepared and ready to go into battle,” Conceiçao said on August 23 during his press conference.
He thinks his group is gradually assimilating his playing philosophy. “The players are starting to understand what I want defensively and offensively. Defensively the team is solid, offensively we have a lot of play. It’s true that in the last two games we missed goals [1-0 and 0-0 against Nigeria last June in a friendly], and individual quality in front of the goals, but we work on it with the players. We have all the arguments to fight the other big countries”, added the former FC Porto midfielder.
The Portuguese technician explains that the World Cup Qualifiers have a double stake, namely to seek a visa for Qatar, and to prepare the next TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations which begins in five months in Cameroon. “We have six games before the AFCON. The World Cup qualifiers are more important. Obviously, if we have a good performance that will help for AFCON ”, he said.