Senegal vs Colombia
Thursday 28/06/2018 | 15:00 GMT | Samara Arena
Senegal head coach Aliou Cisse and Colombia head coach Jose Pekerman won’t be needing to write inspiring pre-match team talks for their next game. The significance of this encounter speaks for itself and the importance of the match will not be lost on a single Senegalese or Colombian player, with a spot in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 at stake.
Colombia are coming off an electric performance in a 3-0 victory over Poland that kept their knockout round qualification hopes alive after they lost to Japan 2-1 in their opening match, while Senegal drew 2-2 with the Samurai Blue after beating the Poles 2-1 at the start of their campaign.
With Senegal needing only one point to progress to the knockout stage, Colombia have the pressure of dictating the game from kick-off. Los Cafeteros will have to win the ball and keep possession to determine the pace and rhythm of the game. Carlos Sanchez should return to the starting XI, and the exciting trio of Cuadrado-Quintero-Rodriguez will appear again to pass the ball to cause problems to Senegal’s back line.
Senegal twice led against Japan in their second group game, after Sadio Mane fired them into an early lead before Takashi Inui’s equaliser. In the second-half, Senegal team – despite having less possession – had a lot more chances but failed to take their opportunities. Moussa Wague restored their lead on 71 minutes but seven minutes later Keisuke Honda equalised as both teams had to settle for a point.
Senegal have lost just one of their last 12 matches, but they have won just two of their last seven following the draw with Japan last time out. Draws with Uzbekistan, Bosnia and Luxembourg, followed by a defeat to Croatia, did not inspire confidence but they returned to winning ways thanks to an own goal and a Moussa Konate penalty in a 2-0 win against South Korea. Senegal then beat Poland 2-1 to kick off the World Cup in style before the 2-2 draw with Japan.
Victory against Poland ended a run of three matches without a win for Colombia. Since coming from 2-0 down to beat France 3-2 in March, Colombia had drawn 0-0 with both Australia and Egypt before their defeat, with ten men, against Japan in the opening group game. They bounced back in style, however, to keep their hopes of progressing alive.
Abel Aguilar’s injury could give Carlos Sanchez a reprieve and an immediate return to the starting line-up after he missed the last match through suspension. Sanchez, of course, was sent off after just three minutes of the first game against Japan. It is unlikely Colombia Football team will make any other changes after their comfortable win against Poland – James Rodriguez returned from injury for that game, while Yerry Mina started and scored at centre-back.
Senegal vs Colombia Betting Tips
|Senegal vs Colombia||Both Teams to Score-YES||1.9|
|Senegal vs Colombia||Number of Cards in Match Over 4.5||1.72|