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Soccer News of Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Source: GNA

Ghana Meets Cameroon in Semis

.. Cameroon beat Tunisia 3-2
Tamale, Jan. 4, GNA - Soccer fans that thronged Tamale Sports Stadium were on Monday served a dish of world-class soccer as Cameroon snatched the last semi-final ticket of Ghana 2008 tournament from Tunisia with a pulsating 3-2 win.

"There is no easy way to victory" so Cameroon had to stretch every sinew to defeat the Carthaginians after 120 minutes of uncompromising soccer artistry.

When the referee eventually blew his whistle to end the match many of the players slumped onto the field.

The day started as though Cameroon was going to have a very easy payday when they scored two goals in the first 28 minutes, but it turned out to be a duel of death.

The Tunisians remained undaunted and carried the battle to the Cameroonians, who had to rely on their physique to thwart their effort by shoving them off the ball.

Mbia Etoundi Stephane started scoring as early as 17 minute when an in-swinger went over the heads of the Tunisian defence for him to put the ball into the net.

Eight minutes later Njitap Geremie increased the tally to two when his well-taken free kick zoomed into the Tunisian net leaving the goalkeeper dumbfounded.

After the second goal the Cameroonians played as if they had already won the match and resorted to delaying tactics while the Tunisians carried on with their search for goals.

The efforts of the Tunisians started bearing fruits when they were awarded a free kick during one of their forays into the Cameroonian territory in the 35th minute.

Nafti Mehdi paid back the Cameroonians in a similar way when his kick also zoomed into their net leaving the Goalie more confused. Two minutes after Tunisia pulled one back, Cameroon was lucky not to have conceded the second goal when Ben Saada Chaouki's shot hit the crossbar.

In the 45th minute Tunisia had a similar chance to score but they did not succeed until the Referee brought the first half to an end. The Tunisians came back from recess more determined to win the game and it was not a surprise when Chkhaoui Yasin cancelled the lead in the 80th minute to send the whole stadium into wild jubilation. It was then that it dawned on the Cameroonians that they were in for a fight. It became a dingdong affair until the full 90 minutes. However, as it is said: "If a child would die it does not matter whether he has a talisman around his neck", Mbia Etoundi scored the winning goal in the second minute of the first half of the extra-time in a goalmouth melee.

Tried as the Tunisians did, they could not redeem the Cameroonian third goal.

Cameroon would now move to Accra to meet the Ghana Black Stars in the first semi-final match on Thursday while Egypt play Cote d'Ivoire in Kumasi, also on Thursday.