Andre Onana Returns From Exile to Cameroon National Team

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Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana is back to Cameroon national team after the 2022 World Cup saga.

Cameroon national team head coach Rigobert Song axed Andre Onana from Cameroon World Cup squad due to his goalkeeping tactics that did not sit well with the Cameroonian tactician.

Rigobert Song ripped into Onana for his offensive style of play off goal that puts the team at risk against opponents.

Onana regularly treads off the goalkeeper box, leaving his defenders at ease to forward back passes to him to drag deep into the opponents’ area before launching attacks.

He pushes high upfield, becoming the eleventh active player which makes it difficult for the opponents to effectively press up in the half.

Andre Onana
Onana back to Cameroon national team after World Cup squabble

However, the goalkeeping tactic comes with its disadvantages. A perfect example was the horror goal he conceded against Lens from 50 yards in Manchester United preseason friendly.

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Spotting Onana out on the edge of the penalty area, Lorian Sotoca easily lift a curved strike pass the Cameroonian to give Lens the lead.

A weak point as such is what Rigobert Song could not put up with. Onana started only one World Cup match for Cameroon – the 1-0 opening defeat to Switzerland.

Andre Onana
Onana clashed with Rigobert Song during 2022 World Cup

He was reportedly asked by Song to drop his offensive goalkeeping tactics and stay put in goal – a call he bluntly refused to oblige.

At the height of their differences, Rigobert Song axed Onana from the World Cup squad and replaced him with Epassy.

He was flown back home from the tournament and had vowed never to return to the national team. A month after the 2022 World Cup faceoff, Andre Onana took to X (formerly Twitter) to announce his decision to retire from international football.

“Players come and go, names are fleeting, but Cameroon comes before any person or player. Cameroon remains eternal and so does my love for the national team,” Onana wrote.

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It was pretty obvious his decision to retire from Cameroon national team was linked to the World Cup squabble as reports emerged he may not taste action again with the Indomitable Lions as long as Rigobert Song remains manager.

Since the World Cup row, Andre Onana has soared in his club career. He retained his place as Inter Milan first choice goalkeeper last season and won Coppa Italia and Supercopa Italiana with the club on his debut season. He also reached the final of UEFA Champions League and has now completed a move to one of the biggest clubs in the Premier League – Manchester United.

Now, in a shock move by Rigobert Song, Andre Onana has been recalled back to Cameroon national team and will likely feature in the upcoming AFCON qualifiers for the team.

Rigobert Song’s decision to bring back Andre Onana is coming as a surprise as there have been no clues of an ongoing reconcilation between the two parties.

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It is believed Andre Onana’s recent gains in his club career must have informed the decision to bring him back to the squad.

Onana will join up the squad for Cameroon’s AFCON Qualifiers clash against Burundi on September 12 and may likely start for the team.

He made his Cameroon national team debut in 2016 and has won 34 caps with the team.

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