Former Super Eagles assistant coach Sylvanus Okpala is wary of the threat new African champions Cameroon could pose ahead of the 2018 World Cup qualifying double-header between the Indomitable Lions and the Super Eagles on August 28 and September 2.
The Lions made up of relatively new faces, apart from captain Benjamin Moukandjo, Nicolas Nkoulou and Vincent Aboubakar beat Egypt 2-1 on Sunday to lift the Africa Cup of Nations title for the fifth time, despite the withdrawal of eight of their key players.
The Lions, however, are in third position in their World Cup qualifying group with just two points – four behind leaders Nigeria – after two matches.
But Okpala, who won the tournament in Nigeria in 1980 as a player and as an assistant coach in South Africa in 2013, believes the Gabon 2017 heroics have given the Cameroonians a new air of confidence ahead of the Russia 2018 qualifiers.
“The 2017 Africa Cup of Nations was a major in addition to for the Cameroonians. The players have remained together and they have more opportunity to know each other better, not at all like when they had only few days to remain together before an amusement. That is the reason they kept enhancing with each diversion in Gabon,” the previous Enugu Rangers star said on the phone.
“I’m perplexed they will give us a few issues however it relies on upon the methodology we embrace in playing them. We can’t play them the way we played alternate diversions. What we have now is an alternate Cameroon group rising over with certainty. They played six matches at the Africa Cup of Nations and they didn’t lose any.”
Be that as it may, the previous Portugal-based midfielder said the Lions would just have themselves to fault on the off chance that they think little of the Eagles, who he depicted as “a great group.”
“They should get to be distinctly presumptuous, then they will fail to understand the situation against us. We likewise have a decent group and a mentor who recognizes what to do.”