With a thrilling 3-2 victory over Gambia, Christopher Wooh’s late heroics helped Cameroon advance to the Africa Cup of Nations last-16. The dramatic win not only kept Cameroon in the tournament but also dashed the hopes of four-time champions Ghana, while defending champions Senegal emerged as group winners with a perfect record.
Gambia, putting up a spirited performance, took a 2-1 lead with just five minutes of regular time remaining when Ebrima Colley found the net. However, the game took an incredible turn as James Gomez’s own goal two minutes later drew Cameroon level. Christopher Wooh then emerged as the hero with a decisive header from a corner in the first minute of stoppage time, securing Cameroon’s place in the knockout stage.
Gambia had a momentary celebration when Muhammed Sanneh seemingly scored two minutes after Wooh, but VAR intervention overturned the goal, revealing a handball.
Cameroon’s progression to the next round was not only about the late drama but also hinged on the team’s goal-scoring prowess. The five-time champions scored more goals than Guinea, which lost 2-0 to group winner Senegal in the other Group C fixture.
Senegal, defending their title, finished the group stage with a flawless record of nine points from three matches. Cameroon and Guinea both accumulated four points each, with Gambia, despite their exciting performances, finishing at the bottom of the group with no points.
The post-match buzz extended beyond the thrilling encounter, as Gambia coach Tom Saintfiet resigned after the game. The Gambia Football Federation expressed gratitude for his service in a statement.
Cameroon coach Rigobert Song made a significant decision by opting for Fabrice Ondoa over Manchester United goalkeeper André Onana. The strategic move paid off, contributing to Cameroon’s crucial victory.
Ghana’s hopes of progressing further were extinguished with Cameroon’s win, following their own heartbreak on Monday when they conceded two goals in stoppage time to draw with Mozambique. With just two points, Ghana’s dream of finishing among the top four third-place teams came to an end.
As Group D unfolds, two-time champions Algeria face a decisive match against Mauritania, where Angola and Burkina Faso have already secured advancement before their final group-stage clash to determine the group’s top spot. The Africa Cup of Nations continues to deliver captivating moments and unexpected twists as the knockout stage approaches.