Indomitable Lions: Roger Milla, a CAN monument
Roger MILLA -20.06.1990 – Cameroon / Colombia – 1/8 of the 1990 World Cup Final – Naples – Italy Photo
The 2021 Total Energies Africa Cup of Nations will take place from January 9 to February 6, 2022 in Cameroon. Roger Milla’s country is hosting the competition, 50 years after the only edition it had hosted until then (1972). The oldest goalscorer in the World Cup finals (42 years and 39 days) has written his name in gold letters in the history of this competition.
Legend of African and world football, Roger Milla will inevitably be one of the main attractions of visitors and football lovers who will make the trip to the country of the Indomitable Lions for the 33rd edition of the African Cup of Nations scheduled from January 9 to 6 February 2022.
The CAN is a competition that the Cameroonian football veteran knows quite well having played it four times. He notably participated in the 1982, 1984, 1986 and 1988 editions. Four participations for two trophies won in 1984 and 1988 and a second place (1986).
He especially left his mark on these editions, he who finished top scorer in 1986 and 1988. 7 of his 32 goals scored under the colors of Cameroon were scored in the African Cup of Nations.
Roger Milla, however, discovered the competition quite late. He was 30 years old when he took part in his very first edition of the CAN in 1982 in Libya. The Cameroonians finished the competition in the first round with three points taken and only one goal scored by Mbida Arantes on the first day against Tunisia (1-1). Despite three tenures, Roger Milla, who played for SC Bastia at that time, left the competition without ever touching the net.
In 1984, during their second participation in the most prestigious African competition in Côte d’Ivoire, Roger Milla and his teammates offered Cameroon their very first trophy. A collective victory that contrasts with his lackluster individual statistics, since he only scored one goal during the competition.
He returned sharper in 1986 in Egypt, signing four goals to finish at the top of the scorers standings. He scores in all matches until the semi-final (4 matches 4 goals). But in the final against Egypt, the game is close and the two teams had to decide on penalties (0-0, 5-4 Tab). The Pharaohs are more skillful and prevent Cameroon from celebrating a second consecutive coronation.
In 1988 in Morocco, the great Roger is still there and with the same vigor and the same determination he leads his country to the final coronation and above all finishes at the top of the scorers classification with two achievements, tied with the Algerian Lakhdar Belloumi, the Egyptian Gamal Abdel Hamid and the Ivorian Abdoulaye Traoré. The story of the African Golden Ball 1976 and 1990 with the CAN ends on this beautiful note. Its overall statistics show precisely 18 matches for 7 goals.