Cameroon will hope to unleash potential at the U20 World Cup stage.
FIFA U20 World Cup
29 July - 20 August 2011
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Samuel Philip Steinbock
Cameroon will be heading to a sixth FIFA U-20 World Cup finals appearance in Colombia in July with high hopes of finally making a real impact.
In their last outing, in Egypt two years ago, they only won a single game over Korea Republic, while losing heavily to USA and Germany.
At the recent African Youth Championships in South Africa, they lost in the final 3-2 to a Nigerian team they had beaten in the group stage 1-0.
Cameroon will hope the big physical presence of their players will be enough to outmuscle opponents Portugal, New Zealand and Uruguay at Colombia 2011. However, in their past 18 matches at the FIFA U-20 World Cup they have picked up 52 yellow cards and will have to watch their discipline.
Despite it being 30 years since their debut in Australia in 1981, it wasn't until 1995 tournament in Qatar that Cameroon managed to top their opening round group. Reaching the quarter-finals, they were beaten by eventual winners Argentina 2-0. Four years later, in Nigeria, they were knocked out at the round of 16 in a nine-goal thriller, losing 5-4 to Mali.
Boasting the African Youth Championship's player of the tournament Edgar Salli and goalkeeper Jean Efala, whose heroics came close to helping him to win the award, Coach Martin Mpile Ndtoungou has talented players in his ranks and will be hoping to mount a serious challenge in Colombia.