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Afcon 2021: Choupo-Moting 'felt disrespected' by Cameroon coach Conceicao

14:19 GMT 06/02/2022
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting Cameroon 09012022
The 32-year-old reveals why he missed the Indomitable Lions' third place play-off fixture against the Stallions

Bayern Munich forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting has come out to explain why he felt Cameroon coach Toni Conceicao had disrespected him during their Africa Cup of Nations third-place play-off fixture against Burkina Faso on Saturday.

The 32-year-old played for the Indomitable Lions in the first four games at the 33rd edition of the tournament but he was not used during the quarter-final and semi-final matches.

He missed the last eight fixture against the Gambia as Cameroon won 2-0 and he was also an unused sub as the Indomitable Lions suffered a 3-1 penalty defeat against Egypt in the last four to miss out on the final.

Ahead of the third-place fixture against the Stallions, Choupo-Moting was listed as among the players to start in the game at Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium but when the line ups came out, his name was missing.

“Especially what happened in the quarter-final and semi-final when the coach didn’t count on me for me it was a kind of disrespect,” Choupo-Moting, who has also played for French Ligue 1 side Paris Saint-Germain, said after the game as quoted by BBC Sport Africa.

“I came here to help the team to win the Afcon I am not a young 18-year-old player and I want to play and to give everything. At the end of the day I respect every decision from the coach you have to as he is the boss but you don't have to understand it - so I don't understand.

“This is the reason I told him I was not fit to play today [Saturday]. But I will always be happy to represent Cameroon. It was just difficult.”

During the Burkinabe game, the Indomitable Lions came back from three goals down to win 5-3 on penalties and clinch the bronze medal after a 3-3 stalemate in regular time.

Speaking after the game, coach Conceicao explained why he reshuffled his squad against the Stallions.

“48 hours after playing extra time, I couldn't take any risks with the players and that's why I reshuffled my team,” Conceiçao told the media as quoted by CafOnline. “We saw several players play tonight and I'm satisfied with the performance of several players.

“We have a first objective which was to play the final but it was decided on details in the semi-final against Egypt. Today [Saturday] we demonstrated the strength of character of this group and we won on penalties.”