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Cameroon

Afcon 2021: Cameroon wanted to write history but it didn’t work out – Conceicao

10:40 AM WAT 05/02/2022
Toni Conceicao
After missing the final, the Indomitable Lions will come up against the Stallions seeking to appease their fans with a bronze medal

Cameroon coach Toni Conceicao has called on his players to move on after their failed bid to clinch the Africa Cup of Nations title on home soil.

The Indomitable Lions failed to reach the final of the 33rd edition in Yaounde after falling 3-1 on penalties to Egypt after the two nations had tied 0-0 in regulation time.

The defeat against the Pharaohs ended Cameroon’s run to win a sixth Afcon title, having won in 1984, 1988, 2000, 2002 and 2017.

The 60-year-old Portuguese tactician has admitted sadness after the team failed to reach the final and ahead of their third-place play-off fixture against Burkina Faso on Saturday, he has called on his players to learn from the Egypt defeat.

“The sadness is great especially when we do not achieve our objectives,” Conceicao told reporters as quoted by CafOnline ahead of their bronze battle with the Stallions.

“The players have worked well, and I am proud of them. It is up to us to learn now and move forward. I gave the best of myself to have the best results with this team. We wanted to write history, but it didn't work out.”

On his part, goalkeeper Andre Onana promised to win the Burkina Faso game for their supporters after the shootout heartbreak.

“It’s difficult to live in such a situation but that's football,” said Onana. “We ask our supporters and all Cameroonians to stay around our young team. We have to go after our goals.

“It’s true that disappointment is great, but that's life. We have to regroup to win this third place this Saturday against Burkina Faso.

“We have to try to forget elimination in the semi-finals and think about the future, especially this classification match and the World Cup qualifiers. We have confidence in ourselves, and we must recover quickly.”

The clash between Cameroon and Burkina Faso will be a repeat of the opening fixture of the tournament when the hosts came from a goal down to win 2-1 on January 9.