Samuel Eto'o skips new Indomitable Lions coach unveiling ceremony in defiant protest

Samuel Eto'o skips new Indomitable Lions coach unveiling ceremony in defiant protest

Festus Chuma 20:09 - 08.04.2024

Samuel Eto'o has skipped the new coach signing in protest, highlighting deep tensions within Cameroon's football federation and government interference issues.

Cameroonian football federation president Samuel Eto'o was notably absent from the contract signing ceremony for the new coach and technical staff held on Monday afternoon.

The former football star is currently involved in the preparations for his late father's first death anniversary, which falls on April 17, marking a year since his passing. 

However, the timing and context of Eto'o's absence have sparked discussions about underlying tensions within Cameroon's football administration and its relationship with the government.

"We acknowledge receipt of your item and reference correspondence above and thank you for inviting us to the ceremony. Following this, we inform you that we have received the letter two hours before the said ceremony," the federation wrote to Cameroon’s Sports Minister Narcisse Mouelle Kombi.

 "Unfortunately, we will not be able to honor our presence at the ceremony. Please accept, Mr. Minister, the expression of my perfect consideration," the message added, underlining the federation's inability to attend.

The situation is not just a matter of conflicting schedules but is indicative of a deeper power struggle within Cameroon's football federation (FECAFOOT), as observed by Cameroonian blogger Max Senior. 

The narrative of conflict and mistrust extends to the choice of the new coach, Belgian Marc Brys, announced by Kombi on Cameroonian broadcaster CRTV. 

Kombi emphasized the history of success under foreign coaches and the importance of the upcoming World Cup playoffs in May.

This standoff risks attracting the attention of FIFA which has strict rules against government interference in national football federations.

 A continued dispute could potentially result in a ban from international competition.

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