By John Essien
Cameroon were given a real scare by an incredible performance from Comoros but the hosts moved into the Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals with a 2-1 win.
With a left-back in goal and Jimmy Abdou then sent off in the opening minutes, Comoros were right up against it from the off and seemingly on their way to a heavy defeat.
Karl Toko Ekambi and Vincent Aboubakar, with his sixth of the tournament, put Cameroon 2-0 up, but the tournament debutants would not go away easily, as Youssouf M’Changama pulled one back with a brilliant long-range free-kick.
Comoros fielded an outfield player, Chaker Alhadhur in goal after seeing its three regular shot-stopping options wiped out amid a COVID-19 and injury crisis.
The tiny Island nation were reduced to 10 men just seven minutes into the match after a red card was shown to Comoros player Nadjim Abdou for a stomp on an opponent, the heroics of 30-year-old Alhadhur kept his team in the game and gave Comoros a fighting chance.
Sadly for Comoros, Cameroon’s Aboubakar managed to break through and get his side’s second goal in the 70th minute.
With the win, the Indomitable Lions will face The Gambia in the quarterfinals.
A Musa Barrow’s strike in the second half gave Gambia a historic 1-0 win over Guinea to qualify for the quarterfinals at the Stade Omnisports de Bafoussam on Monday.
The Scorpions continue to send shockwaves in their debut appearance at the Africa Cup of Nations and are without a loss in the competition so far.