You've heard of players refusing to celebrate against former clubs – now see Breel Embolo refuse to celebrate a World Cup 2022 goal against his birth nation, Cameroon

Breel Embolo (L) of Switzerland celebrates scoring their first goal with their teammate Remo Freuler (R) during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group G match between Switzerland and Cameroon at Al Janoub Stadium on November 24, 2022 in Al Wakrah, Qatar.
(Image credit: David Ramos - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

Switzerland forward Breel Embolo has scored against Cameroon at World Cup 2022 – but refused to celebrate.

Embolo, who plays his club football at Monaco, was handed a gift on a platter when a cross squirted in from the right-wing and landed at his feet. The Swiss striker converted the chance and immediately put his hands up, almost in apology.

It looked like a strange reaction for a player to score at a World Cup – but Embolo was born in Cameroon's capital city, Yaounde. We've seen plenty of stars over the years refusing to score against former clubs… but former nations? This is a new one. 

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Embolo has been a Swiss national since 2014. His parents split up when he was young, with the fledging footballer moving to France when he was five to live with his mother and attend school. Whilst there, she met his future stepfather – a Swiss man – and the family all moved to Basel. The forward then signed for Basel as a youngster.

Switzerland were somewhat fortunate to go ahead in the match, given that Cameroon were perhaps the better side in the first half. Embolo hadn't been given an opportunity prior to his opening goal.

Of course, Embolo isn't the only player in the Swiss side with roots elsewhere. Captain Granit Xhaka may have been born in Basel but his family are Albanian, with his elder brother Taulant representing the eastern European nation internationally – while Xherdan Shaqiri was born in what is now modern-day Kosovo.

The later kick-off in this group sees Brazil take on Serbia.

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