Samuel Eto’o will look to add to his 9 goals in 11 international games by scoring against out of form Japan. The Lion’s striker is offered at odds of 9/2 by most bookmakers to score the first goal in the game at the Free State Stadium on Monday afternoon.
Betting odds of 23/20 offered by Betfred, for Cameroon to win the match, seem generous.
The Blue Samurai come into World Cup 2010 having never won a World Cup game outside of Japan, earning just one draw from 6 games on foreign soil.
FIFA’s top rated African side should prove too physical for the diminutive Japanese; defenders of the quality of Rigobert Song, Geremi Njitap and goalkeeper Idriss Carlos Kameni will be playing behind a classy midfield including Jean Makoun, Stephane Mbia and Alexandre Song.
First they must overcome the fact that they have failed to score against Japan in three previous encounters, which resulted in 2 wins for Japan and 1 draw.
The Japanese squad is not without quality, their biggest star is former Celtic playmaker Shunsuke Nakamura, now playing in La Liga with Espanyol. Midfielder Keisuke Honda caught the eye in the friendly against England and leading from the back is 31-year-old defensive rock and captain Yuji Nakazawa.
However, Cameroon will be inspired; playing in a World Cup on African soil and following the appointment of coach, Paul Le Guen. They are offered at betting odds of 10/3 to be Top African Nation by online bookmaker Bodog.
Le Guen took charge of the side following a disappointing start to the qualifying campaign with the team picking up a single point from the opening 2 games. He controversially gave Samuel Eto’o the captaincy and his team then cruised through qualification with 4 straight wins against Gabon (twice), Togo and Morocco.