Senegal claim World Cup return after 16 years

Lynette Rowe
November 13, 2017

Senegal on Friday sealed a return to the FIFA World Cup for the first time since their 2002 debut thanks to a 2-0 win over South Africa in World Cup qualifying African Group D.

Burkina Faso now occupy second place on six points, while Cape Verde, also on six points, are third.

South Africa knew they had to win their last two games to have any chance of making it to Russian Federation, but defeat in Polokwane ends their slim hopes of qualification.

Nigeria and Egypt are the other two African nations to have already earned a spot at the 2018 World Cup, with the draw set to take place on December 1.

To their credit the hosts did not allow the setback to get them down and with the industrious Dean Furman keeping things ticking over from the middle of the park, they soon took control of the game, dishing up some speedy and incisive interplay while also showing good appetite to win the ball back.

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"We need to make progress".

Morocco are one point in front of the Ivory Coast ahead of a showdown in Abidjan with the visitors hoping to end a 20-year absence from the World Cup.

Itumeleng Khune will play at goalkeeper with a face mask as protection for the facial injury he sustained in Kaizer Chiefs' 1-0 Telkom Knockout win against Chippa United on Sunday. I think he's a hell of a goalkeeper and the best user of the ball.

And Mane made a bright start on the right flank, with his sumptuous pass providing Hammers striker Diafra Sakho with the opening goal of the night. After a counter-attack, Mane has his shot saved by Khune, only for the ball to rebound off the head of a falling Thamsanqa Mkhize and into the net for the cruellest of own goals.

Seven minutes later, Manyama went close again, but N'Diaye tipped his free-kick over the bar to preserve the two-goal lead.

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