The home of Cameroon forward Gaelle Enganamouit was vandalised in Yaounde following her penalty miss against Nigeria in the semi-finals of the 2018 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations in Ghana.
Nigeria beat Cameroon 4-2 on post match penalties to book their place in Saturday’s final and guarantee a spot at next year’s World Cup in France.
According to Cameroon’s head coach, Joseph Ndoko, relatives of Enganamouit claim people threw rocks at the family residence and then threatened to return.
Cameroon face Mali on Friday in Cape Coast in the third place play-off match where the winners will also secure a place at France 2019.
Ndoko, speaking ahead of Friday’s match, condemned the attack and said it may have an impact on the team’s preparation for the Mali contest.
“It is a very unpatriotic and outrageous act that some persons will attack Gaelle’s home because of the penalty miss,” said Ndoko.
“It is football and things like this happen. It could’ve gone either way but I hope people still remember all the good times and realise that these players are fighting for the honour of an entire country.
“What they need is support and encouragement, not such shameful behaviour.”
26-year-old Gaelle Enganamouit has played in all four of Cameroon’s outings at the 2018 Nations Cup, scoring a goal against Algeria in their second group game.
Ndoko says the player was not immediately aware of what the reaction back home had been like.
“In the team, we take away the phones of the players to make sure they don’t read the negative press about them.
“Obviously she will be wondering if her mother or siblings are alright. This is just very annoying and isn’t the right way to prepare for such an important game.”
Norway-based Cameroon forward Nchout Njoya Ajara, said the whole squad has been saddened by the events.
“It is traumatising when you read that the people you’re fighting for can’t forgive you for a mistake. It is pathetic and things like this can make you think twice when you’re called up to the national team.
“We choose to fight for our country, to make our compatriots proud but when such things happen, we start doubting if we made the right choice.
“Everyone is saddened by the loss to Nigeria but we still have a chance to qualify for the 2019 World Cup. If we can beat Mali we will be in the global tournament for the second time and that is very important,” Ajara said.