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Africa Cup of Nations 2019: Senegal 0-1 Algeria - 3 reasons why Senegal lost

ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
20 Jul 2019, 21:30 IST

The Desert Foxes of Algeria celebrate their victory
The Desert Foxes of Algeria celebrate their victory

It was heartbreak once again for the Teranga Lions of Senegal.

Aliou Cisse's quest for redemption continues, and Senegal's unending wait for a maiden Africa Cup of Nations triumph will go on for another 2 years.

A second-minute goal was all it took for Algeria to win a second AFCON title, as Senegal had to unsuccessfully battle all game to overcome an unfortunate start to proceedings. Baghdad Bounedjah gave Algeria an ideal start, as his deflected shot looped over a bemused Alfred Gomis and into the goal.

The Teranga Lions did all they could to overturn the deficit, but Djamel Belmadi's side was tactically astute defensively, and they repelled wave after wave of Senegalese attack. It was truly a defensive masterclass.

For Senegal, the game was unfortunately over before it started.

Let's do our best to make sense of Senegal's loss to a very defensively dogged Algerian side.


#3 Sadio Mane contained

Senegal's linchpin, Sadio Mane
Senegal's linchpin, Sadio Mane

A few weeks ago, Sadio Mane expressed how deep his desire to win the AFCON for his nation was, jokingly offering to drop his Champions League medal in exchange. In an interview he said,

“Winning with my country, which has never won the Africa Cup of Nations, that would be magnificent.
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“I am even ready to swap a Champions League to win an Africa Cup of Nations.
“The return to Dakar would be extraordinary. This is my biggest and most crazy dream.”

However, the Desert Foxes were having none of that. He was singled out by the Algerian fans and players. He was constantly hassled by the tenacious Algerian defenders, and his touches were met with steady boos.

Although he had a better second half, he showed only snippets of his threat and speed, perhaps due to fatigue. It has been a very long campaign for Sadio Mane, going down the wire with both club and country.

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