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Senegal XI predicted to play their opening World Cup game against the Netherlands

23:03 GMT+3 20/11/2022
MP_Cheikhou Kouyate_Senegal vs Memphis Depay_Netherlands
GOAL predicts how the Teranga Lions might line up against the Dutch at the Al Thumama Stadium

Senegal begin their World Cup campaign against the Netherlands on Monday, hoping for a positive result that will put them on course to qualifying for the last 16.

Aliou Cisse will, however, have to do it without talisman Sadio Mane who is out of the tournament due to an injury, leaving some big shoes to fill up front.

Cisse is keeping his cards close to his chest but has relatively played with a settled starting XI and in the absence of Mane, Watford winger Ismaila Sarr could start on the left wing.

  • Edouard Mendy Chelsea 2022-23

    Goalkeeper: Edouard Mendy

    The Chelsea man will certainly keep his place in the starting 11 against the Dutch in what will be his 26th cap for the national team.

  • DF_Youssouf Sabaly

    Right-back: Youssouf Sabaly

    The Real Betis defender played just twice as the Teranga Lions won the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations but he could have an extended his run in the World Cup, starting Monday. Injury knocked out first-choice right-back Bouna Sarr from the tournament.

  • Kalidou Koulibaly Senegal 2022.

    Centre-back: Kalidou Koulibaly

    The captain and de facto leader, Koulibaliy is guaranteed his place in the team and with his experience, he will be key to organising the back four while keeping the Dutch forwards quiet.

  • Pape Abou Cisse Olympiacos

    Centre-back: Pape Abou Cisse

    With no news on the doubtful Abdou Diallo, Saint Etienne man Pape Abou Cisse could get the nod alongside Koulibaly and win what will be his 14th cap.

    Cisse is familiar with the big stage, having replaced Koulibaily in the first two games of Afcon 2021 when the Chelsea defender was out due to Covid-19.

  • DF_Fode Ballo-Toure

    Left-back: Fode Ballo-Toure

    Rarely plays at his club AC Milan where he has made only three appearances this season but Ballo-Toure has experience with national team which will come in handy against the Dutch who will have Denzel Dumfries roaming on that wing.

  • Idrissa Gueye Everton 2022-23

    Central midfielder: Idrissa Gueye

    One of the most experienced players in the Senegal team, the Everton midfielder will be key if the Teranga Lions have to keep a clean sheet. The former Paris Saint-Germain man also brings calmness in midfield, something that will be needed in plenty especially if the Africans champions find themselves on the back foot.

  • Senegal's midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate

    Central midfielder: Cheikhou Kouyate

    The 32-year-old Nottingham Forest player will be an asset for Senegal when defending and attacking set pieces due to his height and given he can also play in defence, the Teranga Lions’ back four will have an extra man to rely on especially when one of them gets into an advanced position.

  • MF_Nampalys Mendy

    Attacking midfielder: Nampalys Mendy

    Senegal have done well without a traditional No.10 but Leicester City midfielder Mendy will be the link between defence and attack.

    Not traditionally attack-minded, his occasional forays forward will be key if they have to unlock the Netherlands defence.

  • FW_Ismaila Sarr

    Left wing: Ismaila Sarr

    The man with big shoes to fill, Watford winger Sarr is likely to be the man tasked with taking on the responsibilities of Sadio Mane but the 24-year-old is not new to the grand stage so he should do just fine.

  • Boulaye Dia of Senegal Afcon 2021.

    Striker: Boulaye Dia

    On loan at Salernitana from Villarreal, the 26-year-old forward has done well for the Serie A strugglers, scoring six goals in 14 games in 2022-23 and he should get the nod upfront for the Teranga Lions.

    Dia likes to drift wide into space and should link up well with right winger Krepin Diatta.

  • Krepin Diatta - Senegal

    Right wing: Krepin Diatta

    Diatta has also been used as a striker although his goal return is not good as he just has two for his country but with Senegal short upfront, the Monaco forward is likely to occupy the right wing where he will be interchanging with Dia.