Today the Cameroonian soccer team shocked the world and Africa in particular by winning the African Cup of Nations 2017. This is the first time in 15 years that Cameroon has won the AFCON. The last time being in 2002 with the likes of Patrick Mboma and Samuel Eto’o Fils.
The most surprising thing to recognize about this team is, they are not the lead team for Cameroon rather they are a substitute team who were asked to play when most of the lead players for Cameroon refused to come represent their country. They shocked the African public by qualifying for the semi-finals and then proceeded to give the Ghanaian Black Stars a thrashing during the semi-finals game in a 2-0 win.
Of note, Cameroon has faced Egypt 3 other times in the Finals of the AFCON but never succeeded in defeating the Pharaohs of Egypt. Cameroon’s lackluster performances in the past 7 AFCON competitions has led most of Africa to believe that the Indomitable Lion was dead but as they say in Cameroon; “Ont ne fait pas les grimaces devant un vieux lion” loosely translated “No gesticulations in front of an old lion”.
The Indomitable Lions of Cameroon roared valiantly and defeated the Pharaohs of Egypt in a 2 – 1 win with goals by Nikolas N’Koulou and Vincent Aboubakar. Aboubakar scored his 15th goal with the national team and soared Cameroon to victory with arguably the best goal of the tournament. In Cameroon we say “Impossible n’est pas Camerounais” (Nothing is impossible for a Cameroonian) but I like to say “With God nothing is impossible”. Thank you God for blessing Cameroon with a victory after 15 years. This will be the fifth AFCON cup for Cameroon making them second only to Egypt as having won the most cups in the history of the competition (Egypt has seven cups).
Most Cameroonians are celebrating with the Cameroonian anthem for the African Cup of Nations which is a song by the artist Reniss titled “Dans la sauce” which literally means “In the stew”. For Cameroonians today, the Egyptian football team is all part of the stew being served in Yaounde for the victory. Even Egyptians were chanting “l’Egypte est dans la sauce” as they left the stadium.
It goes without saying that the most underestimated team in the history of Cameroonian football has proved everyone wrong today. I leave you with a lesson I learned a long time ago which is to appreciate the gift of underestimation.