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World Cup Fantasy Preview: Cameroon

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We close out Group A with a look at the 28-man provisional squad for Cameroon, who come into the tournament as major underdogs to make it out of the group stages. Can they pull off the unthinkable and advance to the round of 16?

I'm in good company, at least...the image gallery doesn't have much on Cameroon, either.
I'm in good company, at least...the image gallery doesn't have much on Cameroon, either.
Richard Heathcote

Being grouped in with the host nation, particularly when it is Brazil, is a daunting task for any team in the group stages of the World Cup. When you add to that the fact that Cameroon only made it to the tournament because Togo fielded an ineligible player against them in qualification (and therefore had their win points rescinded), even finishing in third place in the group seems like a tall order.

What it all boils down to is that Cameroon is not going to be a popular team for fantasy managers building their teams, but the difficult matches don't mean there won't be points to be claimed if you can manage to pick the right player.

This is where things start getting a little fuzzy for me in terms of who the top performers will be, who the likely starters are, etc. Since I have very limited access to TV viewership for any leagues beyond the EPL and La Liga in the United States, I only know a handful of the names in coach Volker Finke's squad. In any case, here's the full group:

Goalkeepers

Loic Feudjou, Charles Itandje, Sammy Ndjock, Guy Ndy

Defenders

Benoît Assou-Ekotto, Henri Bedimo, Gaetang Bong, Aurelien Chedjou, Cedric Djeugoue, Armel Kana-Biyik, Nicolas Nkoulou, Dany Nounkeu, Allan Nyom   

Midfielders

Eyong Enoh, Cedric Loe, Jean Makoun, Joel Matip, Stephane Mbia, Landry Nguemo, Edgar Sally, Alex Song

Forwards

Vincent Aboubakar, Samuel Eto'o, Mohamadou Idrissou, Eric Choupo Moting, Benjamin Moukandjo, Fabrice Olinga, Pierre Webo

Fantasy Players To Watch

Benoît Assou-Ekotto - The defender is just finishing up his successful loan spell at Queens Park Rangers, where he'll attempt to help them return to the Premier League. When he was in the squad for Tottenham Hotspur in seasons past, he's been a valuable fantasy contributor, with assists and the odd wonder-goal definite possibilities.

Stephane Mbia - Another player you may be familiar with due to his time with QPR last season, Mbia is probably more well-known for his accumulation of cards than anything else, but when he wasn't busy scything down Thomas Vermaelen, he actually proved a fantasy asset. He'll most likely be playing right back for Cameroon as well, so could get forward more than in the holding midfield role he filled for his club team.

Alex Song - Speaking of Arsenal, the former Gunners defensive midfielder has moved on to enjoy some success in Spain playing for Barcelona. Much in the same way John Obi Mikel is a much more important player for his country than his club, Song should be a leader on the pitch for Cameroon. His range of passing is much better than a lot of people give him credit for, and he could unlock a few defenses if given time on the ball.

Jean Makoun -  A very uninspiring spell in England for Aston Villa probably has some of you questioning why Makoun makes this list, but he began to show signs of life in the late stages of World Cup qualification, scoring twice in a 4-1 win over Tunisia. That performance should be enough to earn him a starting role, where he can make an impact as an attacking midfield.

Samuel Eto'o - One of the most successful African players of all time, the 33 year-old striker established himself as first-choice at Chelsea this season and, despite his age,  showed his class and finishing ability. If Cameroon are to gain anything from their Group A rivals, it's likely Eto'o will be involved.