The muted goal celebration is not an especially common sight sight in international football, but with an ever-more globalised world comes an ever-more globalised World Cup, and so too the conflicting emotions of Switzerland’s match-winner Breel Embolo.Born in Yaoundé before emigrating to France when he was five-years-old, Embolo did not celebrate the crisp, guided finish that helped overcome Cameroon in this tight Group G opener, instead putting his hands up in apology.
A few of his team-mates ran to celebrate the assist with Xherdan Shaqiri instead.They understand, after all. Many of Murat Yakin’s squad are dual nationals, with the Balkan-origin contingent relishing a rematch of their fiery 2018 meeting with Serbia in the final round of group games.
That could be crucial to their hopes of reaching the last-16, with Brazil now next up, but to take three points here was a promising start.Cameroon can take positives, despite this eighth consecutive defeat equalling a World Cup record.
Rigobert Song, the former Liverpool and West Ham defender, will note that the Indomitable Lions were the better side while the game was goalless, yet a repeat of 2010 and 2014’s group stage exits now looks more likely than any Italia ‘90-esque heroics.With the spotlight on half empty stadiums and apparently inflated attendance figures, the Al Janoub Stadium was host to perhaps the most sparsely-attended game of the group stage so far.Read more on independent.co.uk