Cameroon’s goalkeeper Andre Onana was removed from the World Cup in Brazil on Tuesday because of disciplinary reasons. This follows a dispute between coach Rigobert Song and him.
Cameroon soccer federation announced that Inter Milan’s goalkeeper, Onana, was temporarily suspended. This suspension would be in effect for the remainder of the tournament at Qatar. According to the federation Onana had been booked for a return flight from Milan.
Onana was spotted in Doha airport earlier Tuesday.
Onana also released an official statement in which he referred to Song’s disagreement about team tactics, which led to Onana being dropped from Cameroon’s draw with Serbia of 3-3 on Monday.
Onana claimed that he had attempted to resolve the problems in order to remain at the World Cup.
Onana explained that she had put in all her efforts to solve a problem that footballers face often, but it was not enough. “Some moments are hard to assimilate.”
Onana stated that the decision “of those in charge” was respected by him.
Onana had previously played in Cameroon’s first game at the World Cup. It was a 1-0 defeat to Switzerland. Onana was then dropped for the Serbian game. He didn’t travel with his teammates to Al Janoub Stadium. Cameroon rallied from a 3-1 deficit to draw 3-3 in the absence of its No. 1 goalkeeper.
Song admitted that playing with Devis Epassy as reserve goalkeeper was a risk, but said he needed to “strongly act” against Onana, a 26-year old Cameroon player.
Song said that Song could not fit in with the requirements to be a part of a squad and that he would accept that responsibility. He did not go into detail about his disagreement with Onana.
Song stated that Song needed his players “to show discipline and respect.”
Onana, in his statement, stated that he was disappointed he wasn’t allowed to play with the Serbian team and denied having broken any squad rules.
Onana said, “I always behaved well to lead my team to success.”
Cameroon is still in the running for qualification to the World Cup 16th round, but it must defeat Brazil in its final Group G match and hope that Switzerland-Serbia’s result goes in Cameroon’s favor.
Song was a Cameroon former captain who was made coach in February. He succeeded Toni Conceicao, who led the team into third place at the African Cup of Nations. The team only missed the final due to a penalty shootout loss against Egypt.
Samuel Eto’o, who was once a teammate of Song on Cameroon’s national soccer team, is the president and founder of the Cameroon soccer Federation.