The defending champions of the African Nations Cup, the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon, and the Super Eagles, their opponents in the AFCON round of 16, boast of eight titles in Africa’s elite football tournament between them.
While the Cameroon team has five titles, Nigeria has three.
These eight triumphs have been achieved in the last 39 years, spread over 18 tournaments.
The salient fact is that out of Cameroon’s five triumphs, the first three were achieved by beating Nigeria three times – 1984, 1988, and in 2000.
Not only that, the Lions plucked the Eagles’ feathers on the road to Italia ’90.
Even though Nigeria has triumphed in 11 of their 22 head-to-head clashes, the Lions have often chosen the best occasions in which to beat their Nigerian opponents and that is the galling fact.
Last 5 meetings
Mon 04/09/17 WQA Cameroon 1 – 1 Nigeria
Fri 01/09/17 WQA Nigeria 4 – 0 Cameroon
Sun 11/10/15 FRI Nigeria 3 – 0 Cameroon
Sun 08/02/04 ACO Cameroon 1 – 2 Nigeria
Sun 13/02/00 ACO Nigeria 2 – 2 Cameroon
AFCON 2019 Stats
|Country||Ball Possession||Pass Accuracy||Goal Attempts||Goals Scored||Goals Conceded|
To beat Cameroon and qualify for another quarterfinal, the Eagles have to:
Make the ball work
Despite just the two goals scored by the Lions in the group stage, they amassed the best possession stats – an average of 59 per cent, with almost 87 per cent accuracy in passing.
The Eagles were not far behind with an average possession of 55 per cent with 82 per cent pass accuracy but their accuracy decreased significantly the closer the Eagles got to the opposition’s box.
Cover more ground
The Eagles were outrun in their three group matches – 108km against Burundi’s 112km, which they won 1-0; 98km against Guinea’s 102km, a match they again won 1-0; and 101km compared to Madagascar’s 107km – a game they lost 2-0, which did not flatter their conquerors.
What this should tell the technical crew is the team must work harder; especially in recovering lost balls and try to cover attacking spaces from their opponents before they become too dangerous to deal with.
Create more goalscoring chances
In the three group matches, the Eagles had 10 scoring attempts that landed on the target, from which they scored the two goals, though the Lions had two fewer scoring attempts as they came in second behind Ghana.
They say you can’t win the lottery without buying the ticket – the Eagles have to shoot more as they aspire to land the killer blow on the Lions.
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