Senegal midfielder Idrissa Gueye is eager to welcome Sadio Mane into the squad after he missed their opening 2019 Africa Cup of Nations game against Tanzania on Sunday.
The 27-year-old Liverpool star was suspended for the match against Emmanuel Amuneke’s men due to accumulated yellow cards during the qualifying series.
Despite missing the forward, Senegal clinched a comfortable 2-0 victory over the East Africans, with goals from Keita Balde and Krepin Diatta.
Notwithstanding the impressive start without Mane, Gueye is keen to see the Champions League winner return to the squad.
“He [Mane] is our best and an important player for us and we will be happy to have him for the next game,” Gueye told Goal.
The Teranga Lions wasted several scoring chances against the Taifa Stars, but Everton midfielder Gueye has defended his side, claiming the game was a difficult one.
“We had a lot of chances but we scored two goals, it is always hard in the first game to score goals,” he continued.
Ranked 22nd on the Fifa rankings, Senegal are Africa's top side and have been dubbed as a major contender for the Afcon title, a claim that Gueye has shrugged off.
“We are not the favourites, it is just on the paper we have to try to do our best on the pitch and win every game,” he concluded.
Senegal will hope to book an early ticket to the knockout stage and boost their chances of ending their title drought in the tournament with a victory over Algeria in their next Group C game on Thursday.