Prediction Cameron v Denmark ; Read a full match preview of the World Cup 2010 Group E game between Cameroon and Denmark at the Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Pretoria on Saturday June 19 2010, kick-off 19.30 BST, Both sides, rattled by defeats in their opening games, are likely to take a more attacking approach to a game they both need to win to maintain their hopes of qualification.
For Cameroon, that will mean bringing Achille Emana, the Real Betis winger, back into their side, while Arsenal’s Alex Song is likely to be brought into midfield to offer Jean Makoun some support against a physical, energetic Danish side.
Morten Olsen, meanwhile, may look to the Ajax youngster Christian Eriksen as he bids to infuse his side with the creativity they were sorely lacking against Holland. Seen as the natural heir to Michael Laudrup, Denmark’s greatest ever player, Eriksen has earned rave reviews in Amsterdam and offers a vision few of his team-mates match.
Samuel Eto’o v Simon Kjaer: As ever with Cameroon, much will rest upon the form - and mood - of their totemic striker. Eto’o seemed subdued in the defeat to Japan, and he will be keen to make an impression in a tournament which he has made clear is of deep significance to him.
His opponents today, though, are hardly of an obliging nature. Liverpool’s Daniel Agger and Palermo’s highly-rated Simon Kjaer, two of the best centre-backs in Europe, have forged a fine understanding and Eto’o will need to be at his irrepressible best to find the gaps he requires if he is to enjoy his afternoon.
Paul Le Guen v Morten Olsen: Few coaches at this tournament have been granted as much time as Morten Olsen, who has been in charge of his national side for a decade, imposing his style ad beliefs on at least two generations of players. Paul Le Guen, his counterpart, is a rather more short-term appointment, having arrived less than a year ago. Defeat today and his tenure will be at an end.
Cameroon’s play is constructed around Eto’o, with two advanced wingers employed to maintain a steady supply, while the impressive Makoun provides thrust from the midfield. Denmark, too, place enormous significance on their wingers - captain Martin Jorgensen and Dennis Rommedahl - though their target is the rather more pedestrian Nicklas Bendtner.
What they are saying
Samuel Eto’o: "At the end of the World Cup, Paul must answer to the officials. And me, as a player and captain, I must do the same. Against Japan, I played where the coach wanted. I gave it everything and I tried to put my team-mates in good positions to do their job. But I am the best scorer in the history of the Cameroon national team because I play in a certain position."
Morten Olsen: “We have a lot of possibilities tactically. Cameroon have some good players but they do not have the same quality as the Dutch team.”
Cameroon (4-3-3): Kameni; M’Bia, N’Koulou, Bassong, Assou-Ekotto; Makoun, A Song, Enoh; Emana, Eto’o, Webo.
Subs: Hamidou (G), Matip, Choupo-Moting, Assembe (G), R Song, Bong, N’Guemo, Geremi, Chedjou, Mandjeck, Idrissou, Aboubakar.
Denmark (4-5-1): Sorensen; Jacobsen, Kjaer, Agger, S Poulsen; Rommedahl, C Poulsen, Kahlenberg, Eriksen, Jorgensen; Bendtner.
Subs: Andersen (G), Christiansen (G), Enevoldsen, Kroldrup, Mtiliga, Kvist, Jensen, Gronkjaer, J Poulsen, Beckmann, Tomasson, Larsen.
Referee: Jorge Larrionda (Uruguay)
Played 2: Cameroon 1, Draws 0, Denmark 1
1998: (Copenhagen, friendly): Denmark 1 Cameroon 2
2001: (Copenhagen, friendly): Denmark 2 Cameroon 1
Fact: Denmark have won at least two games in each of their previous three appearances at the finals. Prediction: Cameroon were so poor against Japan so expect a Danish win.