Cameroon roar back to draw thriller against Serbia

 Cameroon roar back to draw thriller against Serbia

Cameroon kept their hopes alive of reaching the World Cup last 16 after battling back from two goals down to draw a six-goal thriller with Serbia in Group G.

Cameroon took the lead through Jean-Charles Castelletto but Strahinja Pavlovic and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic replied to give Serbia a half-time advantage.

Aleksandar Mitrovic added a third for Serbia and they looked to be cruising to a win that would have put them in a strong position to progress.

However the Indomitable Lions roared back thanks to Vincent Aboubakar’s superb lob and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting’s equaliser three minutes later.

Mitrovic curled a shot wide in the closing moments after being teed up by Dusan Tadic.

Both sides lost their opening match so the result leaves them two points adrift of Brazil and Switzerland, who meet later on Monday (16:00 GMT).

In arguably the tournament’s most entertaining game so far, Serbia started brightly and Mitrovic twice went close to giving his side the lead. The Fulham striker hit the post before flashing a shot wide after the ball fell kindly to him in the box.

Cameroon took the lead against the run of play when Nicolas N’Koulou flicked on a corner and Castelletto tapped home from close range for his first international goal.

Serbia did not panic though and turned the game on its head in first-half stoppage time.

Pavlovic headed Serbia’s first World Cup goal in 335 minutes of play before Milinkovic-Savic beat Cameroon keeper Devis Epassy, who was playing after Andre Onana was dropped for disciplinary reasons, with a low drive.

When Mitrovic finished off a brilliant Serbia passing move to give them a two-goal cushion, Dragan Stojkovic’s side looked to be in cruise control.

However, substitute Aboubakar gave Cameroon renewed purpose when he beat the offside trap and scooped the ball nervelessly over Vanja Milinkovic-Savic for one of the tournament’s best goals.

Three minutes later, the striker again beat the offside trap before squaring the ball for Choupo-Moting to level from close range.

While Cameroon looked dangerous when they pushed for a winner, it was Mitrovic who had the best chance to snatch three points, but the Fulham striker curled wide as Serbia were left to rue their inability to close out the match from such a strong position.

A defeat would have left Cameroon relying on the Swiss to beat Brazil in order to avoid elimination with a match to spare, but instead Rigobert Song’s side retain hope of getting out of the group stage for the first time since 1990.