World Cup: Senegal Destroys Qatar as Africa Opens the Door for Knockout Stage

3 mins read

This must have been the trickiest game for Coach Aliou Cisse and Senegal. They lost a game to powerhouse Netherlands after playing very well the whole game and gave up two goals in the dying minutes.

Today, they were facing the home team desperate for a win after losing to Ecuador in the opening game. Qatar needed this win more than they needed to host the World Cup four years ago.

Qatar has spent trillions of dollars to put up the biggest show in the world and they needed this game like you need air to breathe. Middle East teams are doing great. Saudi Arabia stunned the world and Messi just days ago.

Today Iran who was humiliated by England found their way back and beat up Wales in the last few minutes just before the Qatar game. Now the home team was desperate to get the people of Qatar and their leaders to have a big dance in the streets. And it was Senegal standing in the way against them. That is a tough place to be standing at.

Senegal opened the scoring towards the end of the first half after pinning Qatar in their half for most of the game with a brilliant shot from Boulaye Dia.

That was a big breather for Senegal who were in fear of what some teams have done so far in the tournament. Play great and fail to score then the other team gets a chance and buries the ball in your net.

That was not happening and three minutes into the second, half Senegal scored a stunning header from young Famara Diedhiou which settled their nerves.

And Senegalese goalkeeper Edouard Mendy who had shaky final minutes against the Netherlands came in to prove why he is one of the best goalies in the world today. Mendy was making terrific shaves when Qatar got aggressive after being down 2 goals.

Senegal rounded it with a score from Bamba to make it 3-1 at the final whistle.

Now Senegal has to do whatever they can to beat Ecuador in their last group stage and they are on to the knockout when 16 teams will go home and the final 16 take on the Word Cup to the next stage. We need Africa in the final 16 and Senegal is staring at that possibility squarely in their face right now. Great job. Keep going.

Adongo Ogony is a Kenyan Human Rights Activist and a Writer who lives in Toronto, Canada

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