Eto'o keeps quiet upon Durban arrival

DURBAN, South Africa - Cameroon striker Samuel Eto'o swaggered into South Africa on Wednesday but kept his counsel when mobbed by reporters, giving only a thumbs up and a smile.

Eto'o threatened last month to miss the World Cup after his commitment to the Indomitable Lions was questioned by 1990 World Cup scorer Roger Milla.

Any doubts were banished when the three times Africa Player of the Year descended from the plane at Durban's King Shaka airport for the start of his third World Cup campaign.

Despite Milla's comments, Eto'o played against Portugal last week, only to be dismissed for dangerous play.

Asked about the squad's morale after a troubled fortnight, however, the 29-year-old left coach Paul Le Guen to do the talking.

"We had a good preparation and we are optimistic," the Frenchman told reporters.

"We have pressure but it's not a surprise for me. It's normal. We have good players, we have a good team, I am hopeful."

Cameroon, the first African side to reach the World Cup quarter-finals in 1990, are one of Africa's best hopes of winning the first World Cup played on the world's poorest continent.

They face Japan in their opening Group E World Cup match next Monday and then play Denmark and the Netherlands.

While Le Guen reflected the bookmakers' caution about the team's chances, their fans were in more confident mood.

"This team, this team, Number One!" shouted one fan, another adding: "It's the first time it's in Africa and we are confident this Cup is going to stay in Africa, and in Cameroon."

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