Group A: Mexico vs. Cameroon

  • June 13th, Noon, ET
  • CBC TV, streaming online at cbc.ca/fifaworldcup

What's at stake

With Brazil likely to wrap up Group A, the other three teams have to fight hard for second place. Getting goals and an group-stage win is crucial.

Mexico has never beaten an African team in the World Cup in three previous matchups. However, Cameroon go into this match after four consecutive World Cup loss.

Impact players

  • Mexico: Javier Hernandez. The Manchester United striker known as “Chicharito” has a knack for scoring when needed. He's not starting this game. But the talented substitute can help Mexico find the net when he plays.
  • Cameroon: Samuel Eto’o. At age 33, the four-time African Player of the Year may have lost a step from his earlier days, but he’s still a very potent goal threat as striker.

What to watch for

Mexico’s manager Miguel Herrera likes a 5-3-2 formation that gives his team fluidity. But this puts a lot of pressure on his defence, especially against attack-oriented teams like Brazil.

The “Indomitable Lions” will want to come out flying to show that Cameroon is a strong contender to go through. Their recent pre-World Cup draw against Germany will give them hope.

They said it

“Although we always believed in ourselves, we went through some difficult moments. Now we feel that the worst is behind us, and we’re so motivated to get out there and play a great tournament.” Hector Moreno, central defender for Mexico, speaking to FIFA.com.

“It’s a difficult group, but we won’t be there on holiday.” — Volker Finke, Cameroon’s manager told FIFA.com.

The Big Number

14  Mexico has competed in 14 out of a total of 19 World Cups, including two as host (1970 and 1986). It’ll need to draw on that experience to move past the group stage.

Obligatory Fun Fact

  • As highlighted on FIFA’s country profile, Cameroon is home to the world’s largest frog. Known as the Goliath Frog, it can weigh up to 3.6 kilograms.