Cameroon have threatened to take action against Liverpool’s Joel Matip, West Bromwich Albion’s Allan Nyom and five other European-based players for refusing to join their African Nations Cup squad.
Matip, 25, has said he did not want to play for Cameroon due to “a bad experience with the previous technical staff,” according to a Cameroon FA press release, while Nyom, 28, “prefers to stay with his club to keep his first-team place.”
Reds centre-back Matip explained earlier this month that he wanted to fully concentrate on his first season at Liverpool, rather than have it interrupted by competing in the international tournament.
The Premier League duo are joined by Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana, Nancy shot-stopper Guy Roland Ndy Assembe, Bordeaux’s Maxime Poundje, Marseille’s Andre Zambo Anguissa and Lille’s Ibrahim Amadou in having told Cameroon coach Hugo Broos they will not answer a call-up despite being named in the Belgian tactician’s preliminary 35-man squad.
“As you can see, these players want to place their own interests ahead of those of the national team, which some of them have already played for. The Cameroon Football Federation reserves the right to take action against these players in line with FIFA regulations,” the Cameroon FA’s statement continued.
“Regardless, the national team coach wants to assure everyone that he will put in place the best possible team with players motivated and determined to defend the colours of Cameroon.”
Broos is expected to name his final 23-man squad for the tournament soon.
Cameroon feature in Group A alongside Guinea-Bissau, hosts Gabon and Burkina Faso, whom they face in their opening match on Jan. 14.