Goal and gloom in Breel Embolo's victory
Switzerland edged Cameroon 1-0, courtesy of a goal against the run of play by Breel Embolo, who was almost apologetic for scoring versus the country of his birth at the Al Janoub Stadium on Thursday.
Embolo, born in Yaounde but raised in Basel, struck three minutes after the restart from a Xherdan Shaqiri cut-back to put them top of the section in Group G .
The 25-year-old refused to celebrate the goal on his 60th international appearance, lifting his hands in the air and frowning as the small group of Swiss fans at the stadium cheered wildly.
Swiss coach Murat Yakin praised his team’s overall display.
“This was a mature performance with a lot of solidarity from the entire team,” he said.
The Switzerland goal came after Cameroon had dominated the first half, missing several good chances to take the lead.
The Indomitable Lions, who eliminated Algeria in a playoff to qualify for the tournament, had outplayed the Swiss in the first 45 minutes. But Cameron failed to replicate their first-half performance, failing to seriously threaten Switzerland, and were lucky not to concede another in stoppage time through Haris Seferovic.
Song for ‘brother’
Cameroon coach Rigobert Song is proud of “little brother” Embolo, despite the Swiss striker’s goal inflicting a defeat on them. Song was seen speaking to Embolo after the game and said he offered his congratulations.
“We know each other, he is my little brother,” Song told reporters.
“We often speak to each other on the phone and I wanted to congratulate him. It is fair play to do so. Just because we are on different teams, it does not mean we are not still brothers.”