Senegal close in on qualification

Senegal close in on qualification
Sadio Mane of Senegal

by Graeme Jackson

Wednesday Nov 11, 2020. 20:13

Senegal are closing in on qualification for the next Africa Cup of Nations finals after claiming a 2-0 home win over Guinea Bissau in at Stade Lat-Dior in Thies on Wednesday.

Sadio Mane and Opa Nguette netted as the Teranga Lions moved to a maximum nine points at the head of Group I, with the Djurtus placed third on three points. Second-placed Congo (three points) and bottom-of-the-log Eswatini (zero points) will meet in Brazzaville tomorrow.

Senegal were the stronger team through the first half, but struggled to create clear-cut chances with which to test Guinea-Bissau goalkeeper Jonas Mendes.

However, their pressure finally cracked the visitors’ defence a few minutes before the interval when they earned a penalty. Liverpool star Sadio Mane converted emphatically from the spot to ensure the Teranga Lions led 1-0 at half time.

Senegal continued to probe in the second half, but the Djurtus were canny in defence and offered not little threat in attack themselves, with the likes of substitute Joseph Mendes and Piqueti looking dangerous when given space to run into.

Yet the hosts’ greater quality and depth came to the fore when substitute Opa Nguette, who plays his club football with Metz in France’s Ligue 1, netted on 74 minutes to make it 2-0, striking home from the edge of the area to effectively end the game as a contest.

Senegal eased off once the game was fully under their control, as they saved energy for the reverse fixture between these teams, which will be played on Sunday 15 November at Estadio 24 de Setembro in Bissau.

Senegal (1) 2 (Mane 44’ pen, Nguette 74’)

Guinea Bissau 0

Senegal: Mendy, Wague, S. Sane, Koulibaly, Sabaly, P.A. Ndiaye, Kouyate, K. Diatta (Name 90+2’), I. Sarr (O. Nguette 72’), Mane, H. Diallo (B. Dia 66’)

G-Bissau: J. Mendes, Sangante, M. Balde (J. Jaquite 74’), Bura, M. Cassama (Embalo 90+3’), M. Djalo, Joao Mario (Jo. Mendes 52’), Leonel, Nanu, Pele (Jorginho 74’), Piqueti

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