Cameroon head coach Alioum Saidou was left happy with his side’s 1-0 win over Congo in their first Group E match at the TotalEnergies CHAN 2022 in Oran, Algeria.
The former international player now turned coach is in cloud nine with his first victory at a major competition – one that he will remember for a long time considering that it was in a Central African Derby that carries a lot of weight back home for the fans who detest losing to their neighbours.
“I am very happy because it was very complicated game especially in this competition. I had to motivate the players to win the game. We did it and we are very happy to win this game,” Saidou said.
“We knew that this game was not going to be easy because it is a derby, but we are satisfied with the players who did an incredible job today.”
“We were able to implement our strategy and apply what we have been working on for many months now and that is what is important to us as a team,” he added.
The last time the two sides met at the CHAN was in 2018 in Morocco with the Red Devils edging Cameroon 1-0 thanks to a goal by Junior Makiesse so tonight’s victory was in more ways than one revenge for the defeat four years back.
Cameroon made 10 shots at goal but just three were on target – something that worried Saidou afterwards despite him insisting that at the end of the day, all that matters is the win.
His front lineup could have contributed up to four goals thanks to the continuous attacking efforts of eventual man-of-the-match Jerome Ngom but they were wasteful.
Saidou said, “We always have something that we work with at training. The most important thing is to create these chances. We are happy that Ngom is helping us to win. We know our strategy.”
“We try to have a good attitude which is very important here in Algeria. We shall stay focused on our target. We know that the Algerian people are supporting us. We shall deal with the tournament step by step,” Saidou added.
Cameroon’s next and last Group E fixture is against Niger on January 24 at the Miloud Hadefi Stadium in Oran.