Cameroon start Cup of Nations defence with victory as Ghana and Benin draw
Cameroon began their quest for back-to-back Cup of Nations titles on Tuesday night with a workmanlike victory over Guinea Bissau in Group F at the Ismailia Stadium.
Yaya Banana headed in Cameroon’s first mid way through the second-half and Stephane Bahoken struck from close range a few minutes later to increase the advantage.
The double blow appeared harsh on Guineau Bissau who battled gamely against the defending champions.
That the tie was goalless at half-time was purely down to lax finishing and fine reflexes from Guinea-Bissau goalkeeper Jonas Mendes.
He parried away a Joyskim Tchakonte header and also got down sharply to repel a curling drive from the Cameroon skipper Eric Choupo-Moting.
Cameroon’s Christian Bassogog also missed two good chances to break the deadlock.
His blushes were eventually spared as Clarence Seedorf's men took early control of the group as Ghana and Benin palyed out an entertainingly feisty 2-2 draw.
Mickael Pote gave Benin the lead after only two minutes but then the Ayew brothers went to work.
First André levelled after nine minutes and then Jordan thrashed home the Ghana's second.
Ghana were reduced to 10 men in bizarre circumstances in the 55th minute.
John Boye stood over the ball to take a free-kick from deep within his own half.
But then trotted upfield so that the goalkeeper Richard Ofori could take the kick.
Referee Youssef Essrayri deemed the it time wasting and brandished another yellow for the defender in front of an incredulous Ghana bench.
Pote levelled for Benin 10 minutes later with a neat backheel. Though Benin pressed for a winner, Ghana held on for the draw.