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World Cup

Senegal coach Cisse dedicates Ecuador victory to ‘extraordinary man’ Mane as he looks forward to ‘new stage’

10:17 AM GMT+4 30/11/2022
Senegal coach Aliou Cisse at 2022 World Cup.
Senegal coach Aliou Cisse has dedicated his team’s victory against Ecuador to Sadio Mane as the Teranga Lions sealed their place in the Round of 16.
  • Senegal coach paid tribute to Mane after Tuesday’s win
  • Cisse disappointed the Bayern forward is not in Qatar
  • The Teranga Lions tactician now preparing for knockouts

WHAT HAPPENED? Goals from Ismaila Sarr and Kalidou Koulibaly, in between Moises Caicedo’s strike, gave Senegal a 2-1 win to qualify as runners-ups from Group A and Cisse paid tribute to Mane, who has been instrumental to the side, but missed the tournament through injury.

WHAT DID CISSE SAY? "I would like to dedicate this victory to a man who is doing extraordinary things for the country, who is unfortunately not here today. This man is called Sadio Mane," Cisse said after the match.

"We don't know who we're going to come up against in the round of 16, it could be England, it could be Wales, Iran, USA, anyone.

"Then that will be a new stage for us. We know that we are moving to the knockout stage, which is completely different from what we are used to playing in these types of [group] matches.

"Everyone is a good team, the best teams in the world that are competing. Therefore, we need to be prepared to come up against any side. It is now a win-or-lose situation, there are no second chances, if you win, you go through, if you lose, you go home.

"So, for the moment, we are just going to concentrate on resting and getting fit for the next game, it is simple as that."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Senegal qualified for the knockout stage for the second time following their run to the quarter-final on their debut in 2002. The Class of 2022 has done better than four years ago when they were knocked out at the group stage by the fair play rule, having accumulated more yellow cards than second-placed Colombia, with whom they were tied on points and goal difference.

Cisse’s men have had to do it without talisman Mane who suffered a leg injury that needed surgery just days before the World Cup kickoff in Qatar.

WHAT’S NEXT? The Teranga Lions will rest until Sunday when they take to the pitch for their Round of 16 encounter against Gareth Southgate's England.