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Saturday, September 30, 2023

2022 FIFA World Cup preview: Senegal

The long wait is just about over for the 2022 FIFA World Cup with five African national teams preparing to represent the continent in Qatar. Pan-Africa Football is previewing each African national team before the group stage takes place to provide a detailed guide for viewers and supporters of African football to refer to throughout the competition. First up below in our series of team previews is African champions Senegal as the Teranga Lions attempt to advance out of Group A:



Nickname: Lions of Teranga

FIFA Ranking: 18

Previous appearances: 2002, 2018

Best Finish: Quarterfinals (2002)


Group A

November 21: Senegal vs. Netherlands

November 25: Senegal vs. Qatar

November 29: Senegal vs. Ecuador


Aliou Cissé

A native of the Casamance region in Senegal, Cissé has been at the center of the country’s rise to prominence as both a player and manager of the Lions of Teranga. As a central midfielder in his playing days the now 46-year-old captained Senegal to the final of the 2002 Africa Cup of Nations before leading the team to their shock run to the quarterfinals of the World Cup in the same year. Having missed a penalty as Senegal finished runners-up at the 2002 AFCON, Cissé finally overcame an obstacle that haunted the national team for so long by managing the team to their first ever continental triumph earlier this year.

As a manager Cissé will equip his team to play directly and to exploit the flanks with pace and dribbling on the wings from his talented forwards and attack minded fullbacks. Set to line his team up in a 4-3-3, his three central midfielders will stay compact and organized with the responsibility of maintaining the team’s shape. Senegal do not look to press high under Cissé who prefers to have his forward line drop back and contribute to the defense in order to make things difficult for opposing midfielders. In his position since March 2015, the tactician has earned his long tenure thanks to an encyclopedic knowledge of his player pool and tactical problem solving.

Expected Formation