Cameroon coach rails at 'injustice' against England, defends team's behaviour

Cameroon coach Alain Djeumfa insisted his team remained "very professional" and did not refuse to carry on playing during their bad-tempered 3-0 defeat against England at the women's World Cup on Sunday.

The Indomitable Lionesses raged at several decisions made by the Chinese referee as they were dumped out of the tournament in the last 16.

Their sense of what he called an "injustice" stemmed from England's opening goal in the 14th minute, which came from a free-kick awarded in the box when goalkeeper Annette Ngo Ndom picked up what was adjudged to have been a backpass.

"I felt the match got away from us when the free-kick was awarded against us in the 14th minute. I think that was a disgrace," said Djeumfa.

"We didn't want to concede a goal in the first 20 minutes but the officials wanted something different.

"After that goal the players' rhythm dropped, but I would like to take my hat off to them for their performance despite the refereeing errors."

Later on, the Cameroonians appeared to threaten to walk off the pitch after the referee allowed England's second goal, scored by Ellen White just before half-time, to stand.

Initially the goal was disallowed for offside, but referee Qian Liang overturned that decision after consulting with the Video Assistant Referee, although she did not review the images herself.

Further controversy followed early in the second half when Ajara Nchout scored for Cameroon, with the goal this time being given and then being disallowed after intervention from the VAR.

The score was 2-0 at the time, and England's third followed soon after.

Perhaps mindful of further stoking Cameroonian anger, the referee opted not to award England a late penalty following another VAR review, then showed just a yellow card to Alexandra Takounda for a dangerous challenge on Steph Houghton, again after reviewing the footage.

"We played fair, it's football," insisted Djeumfa.

"All I have said is that it was an injustice. It is football. It is a game. Tonight the referee got a lot of things wrong. Watch the match and you will see her mistakes.

"The players never refused to play. They were very professional."

He added: "We came back to 2-1 and again the goal was disallowed by the VAR. I think if that goal had stood we would have had a different outcome."

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