A late finish by captain Vincent Aboubakar’s 20-year-old hopes of winning the World Cup as the Lions bowed out in indomitable style by beating a much-changed Brazil 1-0 at the Lusail Stadium on Friday.
With qualification already in the bag after wins over Serbia and Switzerland, Brazil has yet to win Group G, ahead of Switzerland will have a goal difference, and will meet Group H runners-up South Korea, who beat Portugal 2-1, in the second round.
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Cameroon, whose last World Cup victory was in 2002 against Saudi Arabia, were on the back foot most assuredly but at the death. Aboubakar sent a powerful header past Ederson to pick up a second yellow to take his jersey off in celebration.
It was Cameroon’s first road against Brazil at the World Cup and the South American giants’ first defeat of Africa in opposition finals.
Brazil had by far the greater share of possession and carved out more chances than their opponents, but in the end it was Cameroon who actually counted the only statistics.
“We dominated the match and had several chances, there was no lack of purpose,” said Brazil’s Eder Militao.
“We should have scored, but a lack of focus on one play allowed us to score. It’s disappointing considering the way we played.”
The match took place in a relatively subdued atmosphere at the cavernous Lusail stadium, the tournament’s biggest venue, with Brazil’s reserves eager to impress, but Tite’s side failed to assert their usual flair.
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Gabriel Martinelli was Brazil’s most lively player and almost made it five on the 14th minute when he was picked out by Fred’s ball over the top, but Arsenal’s head forward pulled the best of the reaction past Devis Epassy.
Cameroon posed little to no threat until first-half injury time, when Nicolas Moumi Ngamaleu’s cross was met by Bryan Mbeumo’s powerful header, which Ederson snatched at full-length.
Htteris seemed satisfied and made a triple change just after the interval, bringing on Marquinho for the injured Alex Telles, and replacing Rodrygo and Fred with Everton Ribeiro and Bruno Guimaraes.
The substitutes stirred Brazil into a sudden flurry of chances with Epassy forced into action three times in as many minutes.
First, Martinelli beat the palms of the Cameroon keeper with a shot in the 56th minute.
Next, Eder Militao got his luck from the near corner by flattering a fumble from the Cameroon keeper, who recovered to steal the ball to safety, before the lively Anthony stepped into the act, driving Epassia into concern, only to make a save. tried to twist
Tite sent in Pedro in the 64th minute and Rafinha in the 79th as Brazil looked to maintain their perfect record in the group, but Cameroon held on until Aboubakar arrived on time to take his place.