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Le Guen bullish ahead of World Cup

DURBAN, June 10 – Cameroon touched down on Wednesday, a confident coach Paul Le Guen branding his World Cup team as one loaded with potential and the ability to make it through a tough Group E.Cameroon open their campaign against Japan in Bloemfontein on Monday and then play Denmark five days later in Pretoria before rounding up against the Netherlands in Cape Town on June 24.

And Frenchman Le Guen said he was desperate to get Cameroon’s show on the road.

"We’re going to compete in the World Cup with a team which has potential," he said. "We’ve given ourselves good working conditions and the training camps have given us a lot of hope.

"I am confident, I have a feeling that the players are really on the path to achieving their goal."

The former Lyon, Rangers and PSG coach admitted, however, that their group was "complicated and difficult".

"The Netherlands are favourites but behind them there are possibilities," he acknowledged.

"We’ll need a bit of luck, as always, and some talent, which the players have. I’m content and I’ll be even more so if we win some matches."

The ‘Indomitable Lions’ arrived in Durban directly from a training camp in Yaounde which Le Guen said had strengthened team spirit.

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"The tournament already started for us with the training camp some 18-20 days ago," said the coach, capped 17 times by France.

"We’re now desperate to get settled in the hotel, to do some training sessions and obviously to get on with the first match."

Cameroon have not had the best run-up to world football’s showpiece event, however, losing 4-3 to Serbia, 3-1 to Portugal and struggling to a 1-1 draw against World Cup debutants Slovakia in their warm-up games.

Captain Samuel Eto’o also questioned his very presence with the team after criticism from former player Roger Milla that he gave little to the national squad.

But Eto’o, fresh from winning the Champions League with Inter Milan to add to his two European Cup winning medals with Barcelona in 2006 and 2009, is in South Africa and Le Guen said his squad were all fit and raring to go.

"There’s no problems, all the players are available and I have no one injured," he said. "I can count on the full 23, and that’s what I wanted.

"Now it’s up to us to go and play, up to us to do what we must to satisfy the people of Cameroon."

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