‘I’m first a father before being a footballer’ – Nsame explains long absence from Cameroon team
The 27-year-old is yet to feature for the Indomitable Lions despite his fine goalscoring streak in the Swiss Super League
Young Boys striker Jean-Pierre Nsame has explained his long absence from the Cameroon national team despite a recent invitation from coach Antonio Conceicao.
Nsame has been impressive in front of goal in the Swiss Super League and he currently holds the record for the most goals in a single campaign after scoring 32 goals in 32 league appearances last season.
He has continued the goalscoring form this term with 17 goals in all competitions for the defending Swiss top-flight champions.
Cameroon are tracking his exploits in Switzerland but the 27-year-old is finding it difficult to accept their invitation as he prioritises family commitment.
“Cameroon has been calling me for a year, but I can’t go,” Nsame told Goal.com “The reason is simple: my daughter lives in France and has gone to school. She also needs her dad to help her in this new stage.
“I then spoke with the coach to explain to him the reason for my non-attendance. This truce was the only time I could see my daughter. I told them: ‘I am first a father before being a football player. I can win all the trophies in the world, but if my daughter hates me or isn’t happy, I haven’t won anything at all’.”
Nsame made his Indomitable Lions debut against Nigeria in a World Cup qualifying fixture in September 2017 and he has not played for his country of birth since June 2019 in their 2-1 friendly win over Zambia.
Prior to the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Mozambique last year, the Douala-born star was invited by Conceicao and he has explained why he did not make the trip to Africa.
“And then last November, I was summoned and I said I was going to come,” he continued. “But during the match just before the international break, I hurt myself.
“I called the team manager of the selection [Salomon Olem] and explained to him that I left the match earlier because I felt pain in the fibula and that the next day, I will go for exams. When I did the MRI, the doctor confirmed that the area is very inflamed and that if I keep playing with it, I will definitely hurt myself.
“He prescribed a minimum five-day cut-off and we called together a member of the selection staff to clearly explain the situation to him and show him the images. And the same evening, it starts to go in all directions.
“Salomon Olembe called me and asked me to make the trip to be able to discuss with the coach. But frankly, I’m not going to take the plane to stay an hour or two before leaving. Especially since I also had to do a Covid-19 test and treat myself.
“Then the situation came to a head when the coach [Antonio Conceicao] made a statement saying that I had to take a position with regard to the selection and evoke the times he called me up and I did not come. At that point, I tell myself, he’s looking for shit. A simple phone call would have been enough to settle all that..”