Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana has come out of international retirement to join up with Cameroon’s national team for their Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Burundi.
This decision comes after Onana had previously announced his retirement from international football in December due to a disagreement with head coach Rigobert Song over tactics.
Onana cited his “unshakeable love and attachment” to his homeland, Cameroon, as the reason for his return to the national team. He expressed his desire to represent his country and stated that nothing could shake his conviction to play for Cameroon.
In a statement, Andre Onana said, “My desire to represent my country has never wavered since my youth, and this aspiration remains an inseparable part of my identity. Nothing and no one can shake this conviction.”
He also mentioned facing “injustice and manipulation” in recent months but emphasized his commitment to Cameroon and his determination to contribute to the team’s success.
Onana had last played for Cameroon in the opening game of the 2022 World Cup against Switzerland but was subsequently left out of the squad for the remainder of the tournament. His return to international duty means he could potentially miss several Premier League fixtures for Manchester United if Cameroon qualifies for the Africa Cup of Nations, scheduled for January and February.
The decision to recall Onana to the national team is significant for both the player and Cameroon’s footballing future. The 27-year-old goalkeeper, who joined Manchester United from Inter Milan, is a key asset for both club and country, and his return could bolster Cameroon’s chances in the upcoming qualifiers and tournament.
Cameroon faces Burundi on September 12 in their final Afcon qualifier, with the tournament set to take place in Ivory Coast in January 2024. If Cameroon secures qualification, Onana could miss a portion of United’s Premier League fixtures during that period.