The Black Stars Draw and the Heartbreaking Exit of the Indomitable Lions

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Let's begin with our boys from Ghana. They met an avenge-hungry Australia who, after their 0-4 dismal performance against Germany, stepped out on the pitch ready to show everyone that if were only given a fair chance, they'd prove to the world they belong on this stage. And it started well for the Socceroos as they did what they have never done before in a World Cup and scored the first goal. But Ghana were given a gratis opportunity when Australia, for the second game in a row, had a man sent off and Ghana scored the penalty kick for the second game in a row. All the Black Stars had to do now was to win - the stage was set!

But for some reason the indescribable we-relax-when-we-have-one-more-player syndrome kicked in and the Australian side that fought for honor held Ghana back. With any luck the Socceroos could even have been the first team in the World Cup to score with 10 men through their brilliant opportunity with 20-minutes left. But the final result gives Ghana a mission for the final round. If they take at least one point from Germany – they’re through – on Germany’s expense. Bet you didn’t ze zat coming, Die Mannschafte? 

And then, Cameroon. What started so well ended in huge disaapointment. First we had to ask ourselves, what had the the team been doing since their last game? By the looks of it – a lot. They came out as an entirely different team from the one that played Japan, really earning their nicknames of Indomitable Lions and practically chewed up Denmark. We saw a frenzied Cameroon team that started on hyper-speed and then accelerated. Inspired captain and super-human Samuel Eto’o (who else) took the role of early savior and capitalized on a Danish defense-mistake. Boom. A goal that deservedly put them ahead with 1-0. What followed was attack after attack. PUMAFootball could barely believe the last five minutes of the first half, “oh! no! ooooh! yeah! no! oh! OH!”

The Lions were still going for victory and perhaps they played a little bit too offensively as it opened up spaces for the Danes to counterattack. Cameroon’s nightmare started with a perfect schoolbook attack from Denmark that resulted in an equalizer from Bendtner and later a brilliant move from Rommedahl and suddenly Denmark was in front with 2-1. Cameroon tried but was denied by the post, the goalie, bad luck and misfires. The reasons were numerous but the result remains.

Because so unpredictable is football, that not even a vivid performance will give you the result you’re looking for. The unpredictability of football means that the smallest measurements differentiate winning from losing. The team of your heart might not get the result they deserve. The World Cup’s first casualty, Cameroon is out.