Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

England vs Cameroon: Racism not a factor in VAR controversy, says Alain Djeumfa

Cameroon players were angered by two VAR decisions

Mark Critchley
Monday 24 June 2019 08:06 BST
Women’s World Cup in numbers

Cameroon’s head coach Alain Djeumfa denied suggestions that racism was a factor in his side’s Women’s World Cup exit, despite their anger with two VAR decisions in the 3-0 defeat to England.

Reports at half time suggested that the Cameroon players felt they had been victims of discrimination after England’s second goal in Valenciennes was awarded by the video technology.

Ellen White’s strike was initially ruled out for offside but the decision was overturned in the VAR control room. Cameroon’s players were incensed and delayed the restart of play in order to argue their case with referee Liang Qin.

A Fifa representative was brought to speak to Cameroon before the start of the second half and clarify the decision, but there was further outrage when Ajara Nchout saw a goal ruled out by VAR for a marginal offside.

Djeumfa labelled the officiating a “miscarriage of justice” in his post-match press conference, but refuted claims that his players felt they had been treated unfairly on account of their race.

“No, I just said it was a miscarriage of justice,” Djeumfa reiterated. “I won’t go any further than that. Why should I say anything else? This is football, it’s a game. It’s a sport. Occasionally the referee makes mistakes, but the referee made a lot of mistakes tonight.”

Djeumfa also denied that his team stopped playing or refused to carry on, despite their reluctance to restart play after White’s goal and the long protests which followed Nchout’s disallowed strike.

“I think that is wrong. Excuse me, I think that is your feeling,” he said, when asked whether his players had acted petulantly.

“The players never stopped and refused to play. I think my players were examples and occasionally, when you are in this state of shock, you can lose your cool.

“I don’t think the players ever really refused and I think they showed professionalism and I take my hats off to them for that.”

Djeumfa added: “We might have had a moment to walk off. Thanks to God I was able to remain calm. I was able to keep my cool. There was a lot of passion out there. I have to thank God for keeping calm.”

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in