At Paris 2003, Cameroon made football history by winning silver medal and will end their 14 year absence from Confederation tournament this weekend aganist Copa America winners Chile.
Confederations Cup 2003 edition remains their remarkable campaign as they made it to the final where they lost to Thierry Henry’s golden goal that gave France victory on an emotional night.
Henry scored seven minutes into extra-time as the host nation beat a brave Cameroon side.
Cameroon were playing the match as a tribute to team-mate Marc-Vivien Foe, who died after collapsing during the team’s semi-final win over Colombia.
Our writer Fetsus Chuma looks back at the Indomitable Lions squad that took part in the finals and where they are right now.
Idris Carlos Kameni
Kameni was called to the national team in 2003 at the age of 19.At that time he was playing playing proffessional football with French Ligue 1 side, AS Saint-Etienne where he was substitute goalkeeper.
It was he who kept the Cameroonians in the competition with wonderful saves and he only missed one match during the competition.
Now 33 years old he is still active turning for FC Malaga in the Spanish Liga.
He retired from active football in 2014 after a successful career in Indonesia.From there he went and settled in Marseilles,France where he stayed for several years.
The former Olympique de Mvolyé player currently serves as a director of an amatuer side As Helvétique in France where he also plays the role of U19 coach.
After his retirement from football,the former national team captain has remained with Indomitable Lions.He was appointed as Cameroon head coach in 2016 in-charge the local based squad,a position that he retains upto now despite his health problems.
The 39-year old was in charge of Chad until his current appointment.He remains the most experienced player in the history of Cameroon football.
His playing experience into his role at the helm of the local side will be vital as they prepare for Chan 2018 that will be hosted by Kenya.
Nicknamed as the Emperor of Colombia,the 34-year-old Mbami is still playing football.Currently, he turns for FC Millonarios a team that plays in Liga Aguilla,Colombia.
So far he has already spent his first season having played 15 games with the Bogota team.
Njitap has been in football for long having played for big clubs in
Europe for couple of years.
After retirement he came back to Cameroon where he started involving himself with football administration.
Last year, he was elected as president of the National Union of Cameroonian footballers (Synafoc).He also serves as an executive committee member of the local football governing body FECAFOOT.
At 41-year old, the Cameroonian striker is struggling to leave the football although he no longer plays at the high level.
He currently turns for amatuer side, Harly-Quentin in Aisne, France, where he also holds position of Sports Director, in charge of the U10 team. He is planing to spend some time back in class next year inorder to upgrade is coaching skills.
The former Portsmouth midfielder was found dead three years ago in his French apartment.
His last club was Sporting Toulon Var.Up to date the cause of his death remains unknown. He was buried in Baleveng village in Western Cameroon.
The emotion remains lively, as Cameroon prepares to take part again in the Confederations Cup. The incident of 2003 in France always keeps bitter memories in the minds of every Cameroonian football follower.
In this years tournament indeed Cameroon will be driven by the memory of Marc Vivien-Foe when they contest again at this event since the midfielder’s death.
Foe died after collapsing on the pitch during the 2003 semi-final against Colombia in France .
The 28-year-old was later found to have suffered from a heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
Atuoba is still active and according to his close friends he will not be retiring soon.
Two years ago he suffered an injury while playing for Las Palmas in Spain, but he finally recovered in late 2016.
After recovery he joined FC Basel but things did not go well as most of the time he was warming bench.
He now plans to launch sports academy and he is one of finaciers of a football project in Nkolbisson in Yaoundé.
After his succesful career in Europe he went back to his native city of Douala where he established a football club called Synafoc.Up to now he serves as the club’s second vice-president.
He was appointed the team manager of the Cameroon Under-17 team in February 2016.
Eric Djemba Djemba
Before his retirement,Djemba Djemba played alongside Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United and up to now he is still active playing for FC Vallorbe-Ballaigues in the second division League of Switzerland. He is under contract with the team until the end of June.
39-year old, Desire Job embarked on business after he retired from football. He has heavily invested in a promising crucial sector for the development of African countries: renewable energy.Currently he is the Co-director of the Cameroonian company Camerounaise d’Energie, Africapartner of the French company called Diffuselec, that specialized in the promotion of renewable energies.
He continues to rub shoulders with the best in world football, despite being at his late 30’s.The best scorer in the history of Camerron current plays for Turkish club Antalyaspor.He is also captain of the team and is set to retire in year 2018.
The 37-year-old Cameroonian goalkeeper was still active until last season where he was turning for Gabonese side CF Mounana. He was also crowned the best goalie in 2016 in Gabon League.
Last year Kwekeu,who was the second goalkeeper at the 2003 Confederations Cup, was awarded a High-Level Certificate in coaching after graduating from a Fifa training seminar at the Caf Center of Excellence in Mbankomo.