With a last-second victory over New Zealand, Cameroon is living up to its potential at the 2019 Women’s World Cup.
Another World Cup, another disappointing performance from Cameroon.
Or so it seemed with Thursday’s game going into the dying minutes. With no shortage of drama at the 2019 Women’s World Cup, Cameroon pulled off the impossible and defeated New Zealand 2-1 in Montpellier to advance to the round of 16.
The African nation, both on the men’s and women’s side, has always been considered a potential Cinderella side going into every tournament. This finally may be the summer where they do it.
Cameroon needed a win (and to score two goals in the process) going into the match. They did just that with two goals from Ajara Nchout. Her goal five minutes into stoppage time ended the game, triggering memories of the legendary Roger Milla and his goals from the 1990 World Cup.
This is Cameroon’s second Women’s World Cup in history after qualifying in 2015. At that tournament, the team also reached the round of 16, where they were eliminated by China.
On the men’s side, Cameroon has had much more success, but also largely failed to live up to the hype. At the 1990 World Cup, Cameroon stunned Argentina in the tournament opener and went as far as the quarterfinals. Success, since then, has been elusive for the senior men’s side. The team has lost the last seven games dating back to the 2002 World Cup.
Cameroon is the first African nation at this Women’s World Cup in France to advance to the round of 16. Nigeria, too, has a chance to advance, but that will depend on the outcome of Chile vs. Thailand.
Can Cameroon go on a Cinderella run? Anything is possible at a World Cup.