If the true hallmark of a bona fide World Cup debacle is infighting then Cameroon has officially qualified for that status.
Just moments before Cameroon was eliminated from contention at the 2014 World Cup, two teammates got involved in a physical altercation on the field at Arena Amazonia in Manaus on Wednesday. In the 90th minute of a 4-0 loss to Croatia, Cameroon defender Benoit Assou-Ekotto headbutted teammate Benjamin Moukandjo. The intra-team clash had to broken up by another teammate, Pierre Webo.
(GIF via @cjzero)
(GIF via @FlyByKnite)
The confrontation may be remembered as the defining moment of a poor Cameroon performance in Brazil but it might not have even been the team's most inexplicable act of aggression in the match. In the 40th minute, Cameroon was reduced to 10 men when midfielder Alex Song elbowed Croatia striker Mario in the back. The egregious and obvious swipe at Mandzukic occurred in full view of the referee, who quickly showed Song a red card.
While Cameroon's defeat was sealed by the time Assou-Ekotto lowered the boom on Moukandjo, the Indomitable Lions only trailed by a goal at the time of Song's infraction. Croatia would capitalize on the man advantage and double the lead shortly after halftime. Croatia scored twice more as the second half progressed and frustrations clearly grew among the players on the wrong side of the uneven scoreline.
Having lost its opening two matches in Brazil to Mexico and Croatia, Cameroon became the third team eliminated from contention. It will play its final group-stage match against Brazil on June 23.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article stated that Cameroon was the second team eliminated from contention at the World Cup. Both Australia and Spain were eliminated before Cameroon.