Exclusive: Cameroon forward opens up on 2017 AFCON triumph

26-year-old Cameroonian international striker Robert Ndip Tambe says hard work and team spirit fueled the Indomitable Lions to clinch a fifth continental title in 2017 – their first trophy in 15 years.

The West African nation became the second most successful nation in Africa with the former CFR Cluj forward making a productive debut for his country in the largely starless squad.

Cameroon got the victory the hard way despite rivals Egypt taking the lead after a tensed first half in Libreville, Gabon.

Nicolas Nkoulou had drawn them level after resumption before Vincent Aboubakar’s sublime late goal ended a 15 year wait for another continental crown.

“I think my most memorable moments were when I played my first game and when we won the finals” Ndip said.

“Every football player going to a football match or a tournament is going there to win. So, I had all the belief and I trusted in God because I knew with God everything is possible”

“The secret was hard work, togetherness and the belief we had for each other and God’s grace because we wouldn’t have been able to succeed without the grace of God”.

Ndip Tambe played four games for Cameroon during the biennial continental football event. The fearsome attacker had telling influence in his games.

He inspired Cameroon to reap massive benefit on the offensive by riding off challenges, shielding the ball and creating plenty of space to usher teammates through.

The Romanian champion who earned coach Hugo Broos’ confidence courtesy of his decency and relentless efforts, was one of the youthful Lions selected to supplement the attack.

Initially called up as a third choice striker, the former Njalla Quan Sports Academy product became a starter for the Belgian tactician.

“I had a good relationship with the coach as a player because he is someone who believes in hard work and gives opportunities to everyone who give him what he wants.”

“He’s always there for everyone and gave each and everyone one of us the opportunity to show our talents and he is someone who believes in hard work no matter who you are, you have to give him a reason to put you in his team”.

Ndip Tambe recently joined Chinese side Shaanxi Chang’an Athletic in February 2020 as a free agent. He terminated his contract with CFR Cluj in January this year.

He maintains that he remains poised to propel his side to excellence.

He joins Christian Bassogog, Stephane Mbia, John Mary among others compatriots in China.

“I think going to China is a new chapter in my life and career and I am going there to do all my possible best to give the club my best. And I can only do that by working everyday and praying for the best, because I am only human and only God knows the future.”

“Just working hard everyday and praying to God to give me the strength to be the best in the league and to give my club the best history.”

Ndip Tambe has racked over a score of appearances for Cameroon. The front man has also been a source of guaranteed goals in all his clubs, reaching double from figures quite often.

He made his debut for the five time African champions in 2016 during the 2017 AFCON qualifiers, featuring in 2-nil win over Gambia.