Saudi Arabia-based forward Vincent Aboubakar Monday saved the Indomitable Lions from a World Cup exit by playing a crucial role in securing the draw against Serbia.
Aboubakar shifted the momentum for the Cameroonians after he came off the bench in the 55th minute.
Cameroon was down 2-1 to the Serbians until Aboubakar secured their second goal in less than 10 minutes of him hitting the pitch.
The forward said he applauds his teammates for their performance however notes that mistakes were made in the first half.
“My teammates played a great first half despite some small mistakes,” said Aboubakar, adding, “we felt Serbia was shaky and tired so when I came on, I tried to make the most of it.”
Cameroon scored the first goal of the game in the 29th minute after defender Jean-Charles Castelletto converted from close range against Vanja Milinković-Savić.
Austria-based center back Strahinja Pavlović pulled one back for the Serbians in the 45th minute after he headed the ball past Devis Epassy, Cameroon’s second choice goalkeeper who started in the second fixture after Andre Onana left the squad due to disciplinary reasons.
Rigobert Song, the West Africans head coach said he had a falling out with Onana which forced him to go with his second choice.
“I know what I have to do and that is to ensure that the team takes precedence over any individuals,” said Song.
“Andre wanted to step out and we accepted that position because discipline is important in a squad,” Song added.
Serie A-based midfielder Sergej Milinković-Savić took the lead for the Serbians before the end of the first half after he whipped the ball into the bottom corner and past Epassy.
An exceptional pass by Andrija Živković led to a 3-1 scoreline for the Serbians after English Premier League based striker Aleksandar Mitrović received the ball from the 26-year-old right back and scored from close range in the 53rd minute.
The game changed in 64th minute after substitute Aboubakar delicately chipped the ball over Savić and made the score line 3-2 for the Cameroonians.
The Serbian goalkeeper failed another test less than two minutes later after Bundesliga based forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting converted the final goal of the game in the 66th minute, making the scoreline 3-3.
Statistics show that the Serbians held a majority 48 percent ball possession but a minority six goals on target.
The Indomitable Lions held a minority 37 percent ball possession but had eight shots on target.
Current group standings place Cameroon in third place of Group G and the team can still qualify for the round of 16, but experts say this will be an uphill task for the Indomitable Lions who have to beat five-time World Cup holders Brazil to secure qualification.
Cameroon is set to play their last Group H fixture against the South American side on December 2.