The Cameroon soccer federation has opened an investigation into allegations that its players may have been involved in match fixing during World Cup 2014.
Cameroon was eliminated before its final game in the group stage, and was one of the worst teams in the tournament with nine goals allowed. Before the team even kicked a ball in Brazil, there were rumors of infighting with their federation about bonuses. It was reported that players refused to board the plane to Brazil until they received payment. Due to the team’s unrest, the Cameroon arrived in Brazil a day late, possibly contributing to their poor performances.
The ethics committee in Cameroon will be paying special attention to the team’s 0-4 loss to Croatia and announced that seven players in particular are being looked at.
“Recent allegations of fraud around Cameroon 2014 FIFA World Cup three preliminary games, especially Cameroon vs. Croatia, as well of the ‘existence of seven bad apples [in our national team]’ do not reflect the values and principles promoted by our administration,” said Fecafoot, Cameroon’s federation in a statement on their website.
This search is part of a larger investigation ordered by Cameroon’s President Paul Biya who wants answers to the team’s poor World Cup showing. FIFA released a statement stating that they did not want to “compromise any possible investigation.” FIFA has been paying special attention to match fixing since the beginning of the World Cup, often saying they are making it a priority to stop it.
Germany newspaper Der Spiegel reported speaking to well-known match fixer Wilson Raj, saying that he predicted the score of Cameroon’s match against Croatia and also predicted that someone would be sent off with a red card.
Cameroon is not the only African nation suffering from money disputes in Brazil. Ghana and Nigeria also had inner turmoil over not being paid with Ghana sending home two players before finishing their games in the group stage for cursing and arguing with their coach.