Italy Top After Cameroon Draw

Cameroon 0-0 Italy

Italy are through to the quarter finals of the Olympics following a dull draw against Cameroon. La Nazionale finish group D on top without having lost or conceded a goal...
First Half

Sebastian Giovinco had the first attempt of the game on six minutes when he left Alexander Song for dead with a great turn, before firing straight at Tignyemb from 25 yards.  

Italy had made the brighter start but on 13 minutes they shot themselves in the foot when Salvatore Bocchetti conceded a penalty for handling in the area. Chedjou stepped up but Viviano guessed correctly and made an excellent one handed save low down to his right. La Nazionale were a little shocked by the penalty, but Viviano’s great stop dashed away any nerves and the Azzurrini began to find their rhythm once again.  

Casiraghi's side kept attacking as their opponents were pressed back in their own half. Cameroon were playing rough and physical with Giovinco the main target. Chedjou then threatened dat the other end but his cross-cum-shot was wayward and posed no trouble for Viviano.  

The Azzurri then should have had a penalty but the referee waved play on. Giovinco brought the ball down with the lightest of touches in the Cameroon penalty area and but he was crashed to the ground by Tignyemb, who took him out with force. Incredibly, the referee looked away and play resumed. 

It was a poor decision and Italy had every right to feel aggrieved.  

Minutes later, the African side let frustrations get to them as La Nazionale played their way through. Manjedk came in with his studs showing on Nocerino. It was a nasty foul and the referee had no choice but to pull out the red card. The first half fizzled out with neither side showing much attacking prowess.

Second Half

The second period resumed at a slow tempo and neither team looked lively. Cameroon looked happy to sit back and take a draw. One couldn’t blame them given their numberical disadvantage.  

The rhythm of the first half had gone. It was dull and uninspiring and the crowd began to show their frustrations by jeering. Italy had no creativity and the Azzurrini were finding it hard to cope against the physical prowess of the African side.  

Giovinco tried his best to get things going but his super run was stopped as he approached the edge of the box. The Juve man kept possession and laid the ball off to Cigarini but his left foot drive was straight at the 'keeper.  

Cameroon had everyone behind the ball as they defended desperately. Italy just could find a way through as the clock ticked on. It was frustrating for Pierluigi Casiraghi, who was warned to calm down on the touchline by the fourth official.  

The African side just held onto the ball with the hope that the clock would hit 90 minutes before the referee could blow his whistle.  

Indeed, neither team wanted to throw caution to the wind and go for the win.

The Azzurrini looked tired and unable to move around come the closing stages. It was a hot and humid evening in Beijing and it took its toll on the players.  

The result sees Italy qualify for the quarter final stages. However, La Nazionale will need to improve vastly based on tonight’s performance if they are to have a chance of going for Olympic gold.  


Cameroon: Tignyemb, Ghomsi, Bikey, Song, Bebey(Ngal), Enam, Songoo, Mbia, Chedjou (Songoo), Bekamenga, Bebbe  

Italy: Viviano: De Silvestri, Bocchetti, Coda, De Ceglie, Dessena (Cigarini), Montolivo, Nocerino, Rossi, Giovinco,       

Goals: 0-0       

Cards: Mandjeck Red/Cameroon