Tunisia Questions Eligibility of Cameroonian Players After Qualifying Loss

Only two days after qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Cameroon has drawn attention from Tunisia and FIFA. After Tunisia fell to Cameroon 4-1 on Sunday, November 17th, Tunisia filed a complaint with FIFA questioning the eligibility of Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting and Joel Matip to play for Cameroon.  Both players had previously played for Cameroon in the 2010 World Cup, however both are German-born and currently play for club teams in Germany.  Choupo-Moting reportedly played for youth national teams in Germany prior to playing for Cameroon.  Choupo-Moting would have had to request FIFA to switch national allegiance even though he had not played for the first team in Germany.  While Joel Matip’s mother is German-born, his father had played for Cameroon in the past.

FIFA has firmly laid out their eligibility rules in national competitions.  There still continues to be scrutiny over these policies as some players have recently requested FIFA to switch the nation they represent. Tunisia had made it to the playoff game against Cameroon after Cape Verde used a player in qualifying that should have been suspended from the match.  Cape Verde was docked three points in qualifying in September, pushing Tunisia thorough to face Cameroon in the two-leg series to determine which nation would advance to Brazil.

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