They may not have qualified for the next round of the World Cup but Cameroon fans left the Lusail Stadium in Qatar knowing their team had made history by beating Brazil.
In a series of disappointments football fans have become accustomed to in the Qatar 2022 World Cup, Cameroon lost 1-0 to Brazil on Friday night – the first time an African nation has beaten the Brazilians at the World Cup.
Brazil have won all seven previous meetings with African teams at the World Cup, including beating Cameroon in 1994 and in 2014.
But the historic victory was not enough for Cameroon to reach the next round of 16 after securing third place in Group G behind Brazil and Switzerland, who defeated Serbia 3-2 in the other final on Friday.
“We feel good, don’t you feel good? It’s very satisfying. I’m very happy. We beat Brazil,” John Epanty, from Cameroon, told Al Jazeera after the match.
“Brazil is one of the best teams in the world. If you’re looking for comfort, you want this win,” he said.
His fellow Cameroonian Caleb Williams predicted that celebrations would go on all night in Cameroon.
“He’s already drunk and he’ll be up until morning,” Williams said. “I mean, we got Brazil out, that’s great,” he told Al Jazeera.
The winning goal from Vincent Aboubakar came in the final 92nd minute of the game and apart from bringing victory, it also gave the Indomitable Lions supporters at Lusail Stadium a boost who might have been hoping for a draw.
After the game and even less, the Cameroonian fans did their best in this special moment, singing songs in praise of their team while the media cameras shot to record the results of the historic victory. The Brazilian fans also joined in the celebrations, knowing that they had lost but had already qualified for the next round which will see them in South Korea on December 5th.
However, the shock of Cameroon’s goal in the dying minutes of the game was too much for some Brazilian fans.
“I don’t feel well,” Patricia Luze from Sao Paolo told Al Jazeera.
“I didn’t expect that goal,” said Luze, who has tickets to the World Cup finals and hopes to see his team compete in the games.
“The last one has arrived and I hope to be here again when, by the grace of God, we will lift the cup again,” he said.
Before starting on Friday, the group of Cameroonian fans in Lusail was outnumbered by thousands of Brazilian fans who turned Lusail into a sea of yellow and green.
Brazil is widely regarded as the world’s greatest nation and the energy of its fans on Friday – dressed in T-shirts, scarves and waving flags – showed how much they love the five-time World Cup winners.
The victory was “painful”, said Samuel Ngassam from Douala in Cameroon.
“Yes, we have won Brazil. I am proud,” he said.
“But there are many lessons from this that we have to take,” Ngassam told Al Jazeera as a group of nearby Brazilian fans invited him to join them for a short video.
Ngassam said the Cameroonian team “should have shown more heart” and that, in their first game, it seemed as if they would have just made a draw.
Tonight, however, it was not worth entering the next round of the World Cup, it was all about Brazil, he said.
“Today we beat Brazil. That’s all it takes,” he added.
I will worry about everything else when I wake up.