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As Cameroon prepares for AFCON, Chinese-built stadium revives football dreams, businesses

Xinhua EN logo Xinhua EN 28/11/2021 unreguser
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Football player Daniel Kohnguh Tata trains at Bafoussam Omnisport Stadium in Bafoussam, the West Region, Cameroon, on Nov. 18, 2021. (Xinhua/Kepseu)

BAFOUSSAM, CAMEROON, Nov. 28, (Xinhua) -- As a teenager, Rientes Njie Tanyu developed his ability to skillfully juggle a football on an uneven dirt and dusty pitch in his Cameroonian village, dreaming of becoming an professional football player.

Unfortunately, he suffered a life-threatening injury when he hit his leg against a stone while playing football.

In 2014, a team of Chinese engineers arrived in the country and set out to construct a world-class stadium in the West Region, hundreds of miles away from Tanyu's village, Nkambe in the Northwest Region. In less than two years, the stadium, now named Bafoussam Omnisport Stadium was completed.

Marveled by the stunning football infrastructure, Tanyu made up his mind to relocate to the town of Bafoussam, the chief town of the West Region where the stadium is located to pursue his childhood dream. Now, the 23-year-old Tanyu and his fellow football player, Daniel Kohnguh Tata are already in a practice session in the stadium.

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This photo taken on Nov. 18, 2021, shows Bafoussam Omnisport Stadium in Bafoussam, the West Region, Cameroon. (Xinhua/Kepseu)

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Football player Rientes Njie Tanyu trains at Bafoussam Omnisport Stadium in Bafoussam, the West Region, Cameroon, on Nov. 18, 2021. (Xinhua/Kepseu)

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A worker mows the lawn at Bafoussam Omnisport Stadium in Bafoussam, the West Region, Cameroon, on Nov. 18, 2021. (Xinhua/Kepseu)

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