Cameroon implode as Assou-Ekotto crazily head-butts team-mate

The Rio Report

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Cameroon went down fighting as they exited the World Cup with Benoit Assou-Ekotto head-butting team-mate Benjamin Moukandjo.

The pair clashed in the closing stages as frustration boiled over during the ill-disciplined African nation's 4-0 hammering by Croatia.

A clearly riled Assou-Ekotto was seen stalking down the tunnel at full-time, despite the best efforts of team captain Samuel Eto'o to calm down the Tottenham-owned defender.

The incident came off the back of Alex Song's dismissal for an off-the-ball elbow into the back of Croatian striker Mario Mandzukic in the 40th minute of their Group A clash in Manaus.

Song's red card was Cameroon's eighth red card for Cameroon in seven World Cup finals appearances.

[MATCH REPORT: CROATIA 4-0 CAMEROON]

"It's clear we have to find the reasons what's going on because such behaviour is really disgusting, it won't do, it's impossible," Cameroon coach Volker Finke said.

"A result like this is a shame for Cameroon. I think until the red card it was a little bit of a match (when both teams played) at the same level, perhaps the Croatians were more efficient but Cameroon also had good some chances," he said.

"We have to sleep and do an analysis and then we can announce something," he added, apparently referring to possible disciplinary measures after the unsavoury scenes. "There will be consequences stemming from this."

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The unwanted red card total since their debut in 1982 can only be matched by Argentina, who the Indomitable Lions recorded their most famous World Cup victory against in 1990 despite having two men sent off in a 1-0 win in Milan.

While that side boasted dogged determination and the dancing and goalscoring talents of Roger Milla as they became the first African side to reach the quarter-finals, the 2014 edition is a poor imitation.

More known for ill-discipline and considered fortunate to qualify after they lost to Togo but were awarded the points after their opponents fielded an ineligible player.

Even after qualifying they almost didn't make it to Brazil after refusing to board the plane while a bonus dispute rumbled on.

National team coach Volker Finke said the players were complaining that the 50 million CFA francs offered was not enough. In Song's case it was arguably too much.

His stupid act left his team-mates to amble around chasing Croatian shadows in the stifling Amazonian humidity as the Europeans expertly made the most of the extra space afforded to them to rack up the goals and set up a showdown with Mexico for a place in the knockout stages.

(With Reuters)

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