Senegal's Football Federation wants to keep coach Aliou Cisse despite World Cup exit

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The 42-year-old former Senegal captain was the youngest coach in Russia, and his side narrowly missed out on a last 16 place

Senegal’s Football Federation (FSF) vice president Abdoulaye Sow says the Teranga Lions’ failure to reach the World Cup knockout stage does not warrant coach Aliou Cisse’s sacking.

The West Africans narrowly missed out because of Fifa’s new fair play ruling. After beating Poland 2-1 in their Group H opening match, Senegal were held 2-2 by Japan, before falling 1-0 to Colombia in their final game.

A similar number of points, goal difference, goals scored and head-to-head could not separate Senegal and Japan, leaving the two teams’ disciplinary record to be used to determine the group’s second position.

Cisse’s side were then condemned to third-place by having earned six yellow cards compared to Japan’s four.

While also lashing out at some sections of Senegal fans calling for Cisse’s head, Sow said the fair play ruling cannot be used to conclude that the team failed in Russia.

“There are Senegalese who wanted Senegal to fail at the World Cup. They wanted, for example, huge defeats, humiliation (for the team). But fortunately their wishes were not granted,” Sow told Senegalese radio station RFM.

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“The participation of Lions at the world Cup was satisfactory, both from a game and accounting point of view. The goal was to reach the second round but the (fair play) ruling did not help Senegal. So, to talk about partying ways with Aliou Cisse is some personal agenda. No one can say Senegal did not play good football.”

So far, Egypt coach Hector Cuper is the only casualty of the five African team coaches.

Senegal’s next assignment is September’s visit to Madagascar for a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

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