History makers, Gambia will be involved on Saturday when they take Cameroon in the quarterfinal of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.
In what was supposed to be a maiden appearance for the Scorpions, the team has gone on to make the list for the last eight, where they have a tough task to accomplish against the host nation.
If I were Tom Saintfiet, a quarter-final exit will be some good achievement, but then just like Oliver Twist, Gambia will always find a way to ask for more, even if that means working their socks off to eliminate the Indomitable Lions.
That may be too much a task to ask of them but never rule out a side that is yet to taste defeat in the ongoing edition of the continental showpiece.
Here, Premier League News Now takes a look at the key battles and clashes that come could rise in this game in helping to determine who goes through and who eventually stands an opportunity to lift the AFCON title.
MUSA BARROW vs VINCENT ABOUBAKAR
No player has been involved in more goals and assists at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations than Vincent Aboubakar (7). The Cameroonian forward has found the back of the net on six different occasions, becoming the first player in the 21st century to score more than five goals in a single AFCON edition. The Al-Nasr forward also has one assist to his name and is making a strong claim for the ‘Player of The Tournament’ already. The closest to him in the top-scorer chart is teammate Karl Toko Ekambi and Gabadinho Mhango of Malawi.
Musa Barrow comes in second with regards to combined goals and assists (4). The Gambia forward has two apiece of goals and assists and has been the spark in attack for Tom Sainfiet’s men. Coming up against Cameroon, the 23-year-old has the potential to add to his tally and get his side going as the fairytale continues for them.
It should be an interesting contest between the two strikers who have been key to their team’s progress in the competition so far.
EBRIMA DARBOE vs FRANK ZAMBO ANGUISSA
Keep an eye on Ebrima Darboe and Frank Zambo Anguissa in this game. For Darboe, this will be another great opportunity to win the trust of his club manager, Jose Mourinho. His performances in the AFCON has been too good to neglect. At just 20 years, the young midfielder has made six appearances for his national team including two in the ongoing AFCON.
Anguissa on the other hand has played in all games so far at the competition, bossing the midfield and making himself huge in the middle of the park for the Indomitable Lions. Vision, passing and interceptions have all been part of his game and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him continue such momentum against the Scorpions at the Japoma Stadium.
The midfield battle will definitely be the key decider for this game but who comes out top in such a battle?
BABOUCARR GAYE vs ANDRE ONANA
There will never be such a crucial game without a look at the performances of these two goalkeepers. Andre Onana after a long absence from the game has returned to action for the national and has done so in a dramatic fashion. Gaye, 22, has kept two clean sheets in the two games he has been featured in, including the last 16 victory over Guinea. The youngster has the potential to keep his team in the competition but it will all depend on the collective effort they bring on board.
Onana on the other hand is yet to keep and clean sheet but has made some good saves for the Indomitable Lions, which has brought them this far in the competition. The 25-year-old manages 3.5 saves per game, which is about 78% of the shots faced. He is expected to be crucial for Cameroon on Saturday.