Roberto 'Pico' Lopes was proud of his side's endeavours to come back and draw with group winners Cameroon at the Africa Cup of Nations and the Shamrock Rovers defender believes that it gives his side a fighting chance of progressing in the tournament.
Vincent Aboubakar handed the host nation a first-half lead in the final Group A encounter, however, Cape Verde fought back for a well-earned point thank’s to Garry Rodrigues 53rd-minute strike.
As a result, Cape Verde finished third in the group, just missing out on automatic qualification for the knock-out stages due to their head-to-head record with second-placed Burkino Faso.
However, with four places up for grabs for the best third-placed sides, Lopes’ Cape Verde have a strong chance of progressing with four points from their three games played.
And Dubliner Lopes was rewarded for his performance in the heart of the Cape Verde defence by being named man of the match in the 1-1 draw.
"It’s a great personal achievement but I think everyone on the team was fantastic," said Lopes after the game.
"To a man, we really showed great heart and great spirit to dig in against such a great team like Cameroon, and to come back from a goal down to draw, it’s a team effort.
"I stand here as man of the match, but it could have been anyone out there today."
The Blue Sharks must now wait until all the group games are finished on Thursday to find out if they have made it through to the round of 16, and Lopes believes that his side have a great chance of remaining in the tournament.
"We were disappointed with the goal we conceded in the last game, but the fact that we showed the spirit and determination to get back into the tournament, it gives us a fighting chance, so we have to be happy."