By Angu Lesley
Cameroon and African football great Albert Roger Milla has played down suggestions of wrong timing in the appointment of Rigobert Song Bahanag as head coach of the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon.
The roving ambassador with an envious curriculum vitae in the beautiful game was quick to discard such claims during a recent interview on Algerian Television VAR El Heddaf.
Song replaced popular Portuguese trainer Antonio Conceicao late last month barely three weeks before Cameroon’s crucial third round Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier playoff matches against Algeria.
Milla’s view on the move is a sharp contrast to that of the general public.
“I don’t see a problem with the decision. Maybe it’s going to be a problem for you guys (Algeria),” Milla who played in and faced the different outcomes of many big games began his submission.
“We are stable, we are not worried about anything. On the contrary we have an improved team. Many players previously uncertain about joining the team will turn up now to constitute a stronger collection.”
There are a number of Cameroon footballers who were hesitant about joining the Lions family under previous regimes, Milla believes they will all turn up now. The case of Choupo Moting is a vivid example.
“We have Choupo-Moting that will return. We will try to secure the return of Matip and the others.This is going to be beneficial to Cameroon,” Milla continued.
Choupo had publicly declared he won’t return to the national team if Conceiçao stays following a fallout prompted by limited game time for the 32-year old Bayern Munich forward.
The arrival of Song puts an end to that particular case and brings the case of retired Liverpool defender Joel Matip and many others on the table.
Song’s job therefore goes behind training and galvanizing his team on the pitch, he has to sort some of this issues to improve his chances of succeeding.
Milla believes he can and caps his submissions with the phrase; “Rigobert will do everything to succeed.”
Cameroon confront Algeria for the first time since their 2-0 home win and 1-1 draw away in Blida in the build up to the 2018 FIFA World Cup tournament in Russia.
The games at the Japoma Omnisport Stadium on March 25 and at the Mustapha Tchaker Stadium four days later will be career defining for Song who previously Cameroon’s Under-23 and Intermediate Lions teams.
Cameroon is seeking an eighth FIFA world cup participation ticket while Algeria of Coach Djamel Belmadi are on a mission to secure a fifth ticket to the 32-nation global soccer party to happen in the Middle East for the first time in history.
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