Picture : Rigobert Song is the new Cameroon coach !

Rigobert Song, first former captain to coach Cameroon.

His appointment to the post in a press release signed Monday February 28, 2022 by the country’s Minister for Sports and Physical Education “on the instructions of the President of the Republic” celebrates the most capped player in the history of the Indomitable Lions as the first former captain to become coach therein. The same release which invited the federation to take the necessary steps to ensure continuity as Toni Conceiçao and his ancillary staff are eased out of the den also appointed Frenchman Sébastien Migne(assistant), former lion Raymond Kalla(manager), former lion Augustine Simo(second assistant), former lion Souleymanou Hamidou(keepers trainer), Raphael Fevre(physical trainer) and David Baltaze(video analyst).

Rigobert Song who has celebrated his appointment with a video showing him in dancing mode and which has gone viral is being hailed by a cross-section of the Cameroon football family especially after his counterpart, Aliou Cissé of Senegal( with whom he strikes a resemblance resonance in their dreadlocks and physique) won the 33rd AFCON as head coach of his motherland. Fans think the same looks and arguments would produce the same results as Cameroon’s binary Algeria Qatar World Cup qualifying challenge is scheduled for later this month. But then, those who raise doubts on whether he was the right choice to substitute coach Toni who gave hosts, Cameroon a third-place finish in the 2021 AFCON point to his rather uninspiring tenure as coach of inferior levels of the national teams: 1st round elimination of the Intermediate team in the 2018 CHAN and 1st round elimination of the Olympic squad in 2019 U23 AFCON.

As a player, Rigobert Song was the most capped national team player with 137 as the golden achievement. He was the longest serving Cameroon captain(from 1999 before he was unceremoniously replaced by current federation boss, Eto’o during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa). He was the first player to be shown the red card in two consecutive World Cup finals, 1994 and 1998; coming out clean in two others, 2002 and 2010. He captained Cameroon to 2 victorious AFCON finals in 2000 and 2002, and runners up in 2008. Professionally, he played at Metz, Salernitana, Liverpool, West Ham, FC Koln, Lens, Galatasaray and Trabzonspor during his fairly difficult career that spanned 1994-2010.

The man who typifies the trade mark fighting spirit in the den would have been lost to a brain hemorrhage in 2016 had the State of Cameroon not hurried to his rescue with a swift evacuation to France.