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SYDNEY 2000 / SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES | SPORT BY SPORT
/ SOCCER

Cameroon Stuns Brazil in Overtime

September 24, 2000

Cameroon, which one player sent off in the 75th minute and another in the 92nd minute, pulled off a 2-1 upset of men's soccer favorite Brazil Saturday in the Olympic quarterfinals at Brisbane.

Rather than backing off because they were short-handed, the Africans broke away with three men attacking two Brazilian defenders in overtime, paving the way Modeste Mbami's winning goal in the eighth minute of the second overtime. The victory earned Cameroon a semifinal berth against Chile.

The Africans had taken a 1-0 lead in the 17th minute of regulation on a 25-yard free kick by Patrick Mboma. Brazil didn't tie it until only 12 seconds remained in second-half injury time on a Ronaldinho free kick. After that the Brazilians didn't get another shot past 16-year-old goalkeeper Carlos Kameni, a surprise starter for Cameroon.

The Brazilians were jeered off the field by the fans after an inept performance.

Cameroon captain Geremi Njitap was ejected 15 minutes from the end for two yellow cards, the second for wasting time. Aaron Nguimbat followed him in injury time for a foul. Cameroon was called for 42 fouls, compared with 15 for the Brazilians.

"I told them we could still win if we organized ourselves," Cameroon Coach Jean-Paul Akono said. "It didn't surprise me that we beat Brazil.

"Cameroon players like to attack. My policy is that if we are attacking the other team can't attack us."

Spain 1, Italy 0--Gabriel "Gabri" Garcia scored off the left goalpost in the 87th minute at Sydney to give Spain the victory and a place in the semifinals against the United States.

Garcia, a midfielder who replaced Raul Tamudo in the 70th minute, brought a capacity crowd to its feet after a largely lifeless match. Taking a ball from Xavier "Xavi" Hernandez on the right side of the penalty area, Gabri sent a low skipping shot that hit the inside of the far post before bouncing in.

Chile 4, Nigeria 1--Chile blew away the defending gold medalists, scoring two goals in two minutes in the first half on the way to the victory at Melbourne. "I think they went in overconfident and they underestimated Chile, according to comments that were coming out from the Nigerian camp before the game," Chile Coach Nelson Acosta said. Nigerian Coach Jo Bonfrere conceded that his defense "did not know what to do in the first half."

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