A lone goal from striker Nelson Oliveira was enough for Portugal to edge an important 1-0 victory over Cameroon and take the lead at the top of the Group B standings as the first team to collect three points after two rounds of matches.
Portugal created numerous goalscoring opportunities but were unable to build upon Oliveira’s 19th minute strike. Nevertheless the win, combined with New Zealand’s 1-1 draw against Uruguay, left Portugal on four points, two clear all three group opponents.
Just on the quarter-hour mark Oliveira showed a sign of his attacking threat with a header that narrowly failed to open the scoring following a cross from Cateano.
Cameroon however failed to thwart the threat of the Benfica man and the Africans, unable to deal with a long ball from defence, could only watch as Oliveira, alone in the penalty area, finished smartly with a lob over the goalkeeper.
Oliveira was at once again on 30 minutes but this time he blasted wide following another good Portuguese team move.
The Europeans spurned a wonderful opportunity to extend their lead five minutes before the interval as Pele received possession in the penalty area only to miscue his effort, with two unmarked team-mates pleading for the ball.
Cameroon commenced the second half with renewed purpose and dominated early possession without creating gilt-edged openings, although Frank Ohandza saw a dangerous effort well blocked.
Portugal nearly caught out their opponents on the counter attack, with Oliveira again at the fore, displaying good skills in dribbling past two defenders only for his shot to be blocked.
Cameroon’s Yazid Atouba then fired from distance with Mika making an impressive stop. However, any hopes of a Cameroon revival ended with a red card for Ghislain Mvom for kicking Caetano.