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We missed Sadio Mane: Senegal coach after defeat to England in round of 16 of FIFA World Cup

Updated on: 05 December,2022 01:30 PM IST  |  Doha
Ashwin Ferro | ashwin.ferro@mid-day.com

Two-time African Player of the Year Mane, who finished second in the Ballon d’Or race, behind French striker Karim Benzema, suffered an injury to his right fibula while playing for his club FC Bayern Munich just 11 days before the World Cup began

We missed Sadio Mane: Senegal coach after defeat to England in round of 16 of FIFA World Cup

Senegal's coach Aliou Cisse. Pic/AFP


African champions Senegal were overpowered by England 3-0 in their Round-of-16 match at the Al Bayt Stadium on Sunday night, and their coach Alio Cisse admitted he was surprised by his team’s poor show. “We have worked for years to be No.1 in Africa, but today we faced one of the Top 5 teams in the FIFA rankings. Senegal is 18th in the FIFA rankings, and we clearly saw the difference today. We should acknowledge the supremacy of the team we’ve faced,” Cisse said at the post-match press conference.


Senegal were without their star striker Sadio Mane, 30, for this tournament. Two-time African Player of the Year Mane, who finished second in the Ballon d’Or race, behind French striker Karim Benzema, suffered an injury to his right fibula while playing for his club FC Bayern Munich just 11 days before the World Cup began. Coach Cisse was prompt in his reply when asked if he missed his star striker. “Yes, of course, we missed him [Mane]. A player as good as Mane, like I’ve been saying since the start of the competition, will always be missed by a team like Senegal,” he said.



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Jordan Henderson opened the scoring for England in the 38th minute after which skipper Harry Kane for his first goal of the tournament in first-half stoppage time as the Englishmen entered the lemon break with a comfortable two-goal cushion. On resumption, Bukayo Saka netted England’s third goal. 
Cisse said that his defence was the biggest let down on the night. 

“Our defensive solidity was normally our biggest strength so this [scoreline] is surprising, because we're normally solid at the back. I was not expecting us to concede three goals. It was difficult for us to receive a goal five minutes before the end of the first half. Then, we were hit with a second, but the third goal that we received at beginning of the second half, really threw us off,” concluded Cisse. 

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