CAIRO: Cameroon s right back Nejtab Geremi has vowed that the Lions of Cameroon are determined to go as far as it takes to win the 25th African Cup of Nations.
We are set to give all that it takes to become champions of Africa once again, regardless of the opponents we will be facing ahead. I m fully confident that we have the potential to win the title for the fifth time, Geremi tells The Daily Star Egypt. The renowned international player praised the teams performance during the first round. Having won all three matches, they will be a force to be reckoned with.
It s definitely one of the toughest tournaments; you ve got now five teams that have the potential to continue the race for the cup, Egypt, Cameroon, Tunisia, Ivory Coast and Nigeria.
Geremi blames the fate of Cameroon on the failure to qualify for this year s World Cup. It was our destiny not to make it to the World Cup for the first time in 16 years. [Sometimes] in soccer the better team doesn t [always] qualify, said Geremi, adding that if teammate Pierre Wome would have scored the injury-time penalty against Egypt, the Lions would have been slated to play in Germany during the summer.
Geremi plays club football at English Premiership side Chelsea and praises all his teammates, in particular formidable striker Samual Eto as well as his captain Rigobert Song.
Samual Eto is a great force behind our victories during the first three games; scoring five goals is no surprise for a striker with such qualities. As for Song, my captain, I would like to congratulate him for becoming the most featured player in the African Cup of Nations. I think it’s a great honor for all of us which will be another source of motivation to win the fifth title, says Geremi.
Looking ahead at today’s clash against the Ivory Coast in the quarter-finals, Geremi is quite positive about making it to the semi-final, despite tough opposition. The Ivory Coast team is strong and have world-class players such as Didier Drogba, but we have to remember that we ve already beaten them twice during the World Cup qualifiers. Moreover, our team possesses more experience in playing those crucial games.
Geremi, who was a key member in Cameroon s Olympic gold medal in Sydney six years ago, as well as two African Cup of Nations titles, hopes to add to his track record the title for the third time. In soccer, you have to look for more and more titles as long as you re playing. That is the real value that is left for a player after he retires.