Cameroon and Australia both on the brink after result that neither team wanted
FIFA Confederations Cup, Krestovsky Stadium: Cameroon 1 (Anguissa 45) Australia 1 (Milligan 60 pen)
Cameroon and Australia sputtered to a draw which suits neither; as a consequence, both are almost certainly on their way out of the competition.
In the first half, the little excitement that there was was generated by Cameroon, and they took the lead in injury-time when Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa flicked deftly past the badly-positioned Maty Ryan.
Australia played with slightly more intensity after the break, but defeat looked certain when Christian Bassogog put Vincent Aboubakar in front of a gaping net. Somehow, though, he side-footed wide, and a minute later, Ernest Mabouka brought down Alex Gersbach; Mark Milligan knocked the resultant penalty home.
Cameroon were by the far better side thereafter but could not contrive a winner. They must now wait and see what happens tonight’s Chile-German game, but the likelihood is that they will soon be going home regardless.
Australia against Cameroon in the Confederations CupGetty Images
It has been clear for sometime that Australia’s style is outdated and ill-suited. Tedious retention of possession can work if you have players able to turn a game in a moment, but they do not, and though they were always likely to be going home at the end of the group stages, they are capable of much better than what they’ve produced so far.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Christian Bassogog (Cameroon) Easily the best player on the pitch, his speed and conviction were far too much for the Australian defence. If he’d had a striker who could finish, his team would’ve won easily.
Cameroon: Ondoa 6, Mabouka 6, Ngadeu 6, Teikeu 6, Fai 6, Djoum 5, Siano 6, Anguissa 7, Bassogog 8, Aboubakar 4, Moukandjou 6. Subs: Toko 6.
32 - More goodness from Gersbach, attacking Mabouka and whipping over another fine cross. Juric can't quite reach it, but it arrives at Leckie, who takes a touch, throws his head back, and fires over the bar.
38’ - Well this is pleasant. Moukandjou comes in off the left and injects some pace, poking into Aboubakar who controls and as the ball bounces up backheels a return. Moukandjou might go on, but instead thrashes a first-timer that's saved easily.
45+1’ - GOAL! Cameroon 1-0 Australia (Anguissa) Lovely finish, this. But first, Mabouka hits a long pass over the top and down the right, for which Aboubakar leaps; he can't reach it. But with no defender in attendance - Sainsbury is playing offside with no pressure on the ball, while Ryan decides he's going to sweep - Anguissa appears in the hole where a full-back would be, extends a leg, also leaps, and guides a deft flick high into the net.
47’ - This is good from Australia, Degenek sending Leckie away down the tight. He runs at Teikeu, who commits himself, skips by, and cuts back a cross for Juric. The ball is slightly behind him, but he controls well, pauses to asses, then lifts a shot over the bar. Encouraging.
57’ - AND THERE IT IS! WHAT A MISS! Mabouka slides an excellent pass into the path of Bassogog, who pastes past Wright towards the line and cuts back for Aboubakar. With Ryan stranded, still narrowing the crossing angle at the near post, if the shot hits the target it's in ... but he sidefots wide!
59’ - PENALTY AUSTRALIA! Gersbach moves past Mabouka, who goes through him to reach the ball, and the ref points to the spot before consulting with the replay as a courtesy. It shows what it shows.
Milligan, Australia, CameroonGetty Images
60’ - GOAL! Cameroon 1-1 Australia (Milligan pen) Oh dear Aboubakar! Ondoa goes right and so does the ball, but he can't catch up with it.
65’ - Again, Bassogog finds space down the right, and bends a low cross into the box. It looks perfect to arrive into Abobakar's path, but he struggles to sort his feet as Degenek shoves him in the back, and the ball goes wide.
78’ - Siani curls a fine cross into the middle and Aboubakar does well to stay onside, in order to guide a header over the bar. His finishing is miserable.