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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 6:32 pm 
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Senegal's sports minister, Matar Ba, says the Teranga Lions are aiming to do better than any other African nation at the World Cup and reach the semi-finals next year.

In Russia, Senegal are in Group H along with Poland, Colombia and Japan. In 2002, at their first ever World Cup, Senegal made it to the quarter-finals.

"We have to have our objectives - those objectives are to get to the second round and do better than in 2002," Ba told BBC Sport.

"The semi-finals are achievable because today football is not about being European or African or American - football is global,

"You look at the biggest championships in the world - in England in Italy, everywhere - there are Senegalese playing and they are in the teams. So we can rival any of the teams.

"We won't underestimate any of these teams because all 32 teams who are there have won through the qualifiers and so we have to respect them and we have to take them seriously."

Senegal will begin their Group H campaign against Poland on 19 June in Moscow before they play Japan on 24 June and finally Colombia four days later. Ba refused to be drawn into making comparisons between the current team and the squad that play in South Korea and Japan in 2002.

"It's not the same - we can't compare them," he said. "Each generation does its work and this generation want to do better than the team of 2002.

"We have a great team and we have Senegalese coach and we are going to prepare well for a good performance. We are ambitious but we are also reasonable and so we are going to set obtainable objective."

Ba admitted they may not now much about their opponents at the moment but added that can easily be changed.

"Nothing can be hidden these days with the internet. We can see everything we can analyse Colombia's matches and all the others," he pointed out.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/42222285

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:05 pm 
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I worry a lot about Senegal. They are good on paper, but yet to show that temperament of winning when it matters.

In the 2015 CAN, the final game of the group match, Algeria needed a win, and Senegal only needed a draw to advance. You know what happened.


The 2017 CAN was worse. Senegal were the clear favorites. The Plantanians were literally 'wombuling and fumbling' throughout that tournament until the met the Teranga lions, and somehow knocked them out in the Quarter Finals.

Their World Cup campaign was not that impressive. Burkina had to play most of the 2nd leg with 10 men and Senegal could not get the win. I'm not sure that replay vs. Bafana would have happened if the FIFA Sec. Gen was not Senegalese. They only really took are of business against Cape Verde, which isn't saying too much.

Hopefully it comes together for Aliou Cisse. 2 years ago, I was really hoping he, Fiorent Mbenge and Sunday Oliseh would lead the emerging elite National teams in Africa.

Senegal has been gifted with an easy group. They cannot afford to mess things up.


Last edited by truetalk on Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:12 pm 
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So Senegal has a mouthy sports minister too. :laugh:

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:34 pm 
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If they progress they then get:
Belgium or England, neither beyond Senegal's reach.

Worst case scenario its Brazil or Germany in the quarters, but apart from that the worst opponent they can get is Serbia / Mexico / Sweden.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:47 pm 
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Out.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:59 pm 
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I don't know why semi should be their target because the last Senegal team make quarter, I believe if the last team in 2002 make semi they will be targeting final.
Why not set your goal to go there to compete for the crown,France,Spain, portugal,brazil,Argentina, Germany and even England are hoping to win it next summer.
I even read some where Russia also is looking at win it at home by any means.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:07 pm 
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kajifu wrote:
I don't know why semi should be their target because the last Senegal team make quarter, I believe if the last team in 2002 make semi they will be targeting final.
Why not set your goal to go there to compete for the crown,France,Spain, portugal,brazil,Argentina, Germany and even England are hoping to win it next summer.
I even read some where Russia also is looking at win it at home by any means.


South Korea got to the Semis playing at home by hook and crook.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:44 pm 
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Senegal have the best draw of the African teams. Plus they have a very strong spine with Koulibaly, Kouyate, Gueye, Mane, and Balde.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:18 pm 
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truetalk wrote:
kajifu wrote:
I don't know why semi should be their target because the last Senegal team make quarter, I believe if the last team in 2002 make semi they will be targeting final.
Why not set your goal to go there to compete for the crown,France,Spain, portugal,brazil,Argentina, Germany and even England are hoping to win it next summer.
I even read some where Russia also is looking at win it at home by any means.


South Korea got to the Semis playing at home by hook and crook.

That is why everyone should think of win the crown if things start to look clear you don't surprise,Leicester went to the league hoping to target 40 points and stay in the league after 40 and the path to the crown was clear they take it game by game as a cup final and before we know like they said the rest is history.7 games to be world champs is something teams should be targeting to play not 6.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:22 pm 
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kajifu wrote:
truetalk wrote:
kajifu wrote:
I don't know why semi should be their target because the last Senegal team make quarter, I believe if the last team in 2002 make semi they will be targeting final.
Why not set your goal to go there to compete for the crown,France,Spain, portugal,brazil,Argentina, Germany and even England are hoping to win it next summer.
I even read some where Russia also is looking at win it at home by any means.


South Korea got to the Semis playing at home by hook and crook.

That is why everyone should think of win the crown if things start to look clear you don't surprise,Leicester went to the league hoping to target 40 points and stay in the league after 40 and the path to the crown was clear they take it game by game as a cup final and before we know like they said the rest is history.7 games to be world champs is something teams should be targeting to play not 6.

My brother, seven games in one month harro! The pressure, the stress, the intense worldwide scrutiny, the distractions (girls, girls, girls), the fact that every team has a group of football scientists busy as we speak conducting detailed studies and analysis of every team and plotting strategy on how to beat the teams that made it. My brother, e harro.

That very Senegal wey dey talk, why did they lose to Turkey in the quarters? Why did they almost lose to Uruguay in the last group game? The concentration and preparation required to win a world cup is something only few countries have. That is why a "club" of about five countries "share" the cup.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 4:29 pm 
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The same Senegal that we saw against the SE at the Beehive Stadium in Barnet months ago were hanging by the thread until the ref blew the final whistle. We were better than them on the night although the game ended 1-1.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:14 pm 
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I wish them and to all african teams at the world cup, well.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:38 pm 
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Everyone is talking about how Senegal the most talented team in Africa. No one is talking about their defence. It seems their defence is their Achilles heel.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:15 pm 
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Their central defenders Koulibaly and Mbodj play for Napoli and Anderlecht respectively. Koulibaly is one of the best defenders in Africa.

Orion wrote:
Everyone is talking about how Senegal the most talented team in Africa. No one is talking about their defence. It seems their defence is their Achilles heel.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:33 pm 
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OK, looking at their recent WCQ record their defence has improved from the video clip posted here. They conceded only 3 goals. 2nd best in the qualifiers in Africa.

wiseone wrote:
Their central defenders Koulibaly and Mbodj play for Napoli and Anderlecht respectively. Koulibaly is one of the best defenders in Africa.

Orion wrote:
Everyone is talking about how Senegal the most talented team in Africa. No one is talking about their defence. It seems their defence is their Achilles heel.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:27 pm 
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Goldleaf wrote:
The same Senegal that we saw against the SE at the Beehive Stadium in Barnet months ago were hanging by the thread until the ref blew the final whistle. We were better than them on the night although the game ended 1-1.

Could mean something, could mean nothing. Cameroon bombed at Algiers 90 yet round things around a few months later at Italia 90.

Senegal certainly has a favorable draw not just in their group but also in their bracket.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:31 pm 
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Goldleaf wrote:
The same Senegal that we saw against the SE at the Beehive Stadium in Barnet months ago were hanging by the thread until the ref blew the final whistle. We were better than them on the night although the game ended 1-1.


I was there. They were better for most parts of the game but we finished strongly.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:50 pm 
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wiseone wrote:
Their central defenders Koulibaly and Mbodj play for Napoli and Anderlecht respectively. Koulibaly is one of the best defenders in Africa.

Orion wrote:
Everyone is talking about how Senegal the most talented team in Africa. No one is talking about their defence. It seems their defence is their Achilles heel.


I would add that their right back Sabaly (Bordeaux) is the discovery of the season in ligue 1, the left back Pape Souare is superb, plus they have depth in Salif Sane, Cheikhou Kouyate. Player by player they have two soft spots the GK position (albeit the goalie always seems pretty good when I watch him play) and lack of an elite striker.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:11 am 
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Ohsee touches on a very strong point.

and if we are to be honest with ourselves, no African nation has a realistic shot at winning the cup, right now.

It is one thing to be an underdog under non-competitive circumstances, and ride the luck of fortune. It is one thing to pull off one upset, even in competitive circumstances, but to pull off a minimum of 4 wins in the knockout stages and 3 - 9 points in the group stages requires an exponential amount of precision. It is simply less likely for an underdog to make a deep run.

However, when an underdog CONSISTENTLY makes a deep run in the WC, then it cannot simply be a matter of fortune or rarity; the team must have some of the requisite needs to claim the trophy.

For the next WC winners, we shouldn't be throwing wild guesses around, it will likely come from the pool of teams that have been consistently short of the title. I.e. Netherlands (when they return to form and qualify), Poland, Portugal, Croatia.

I have ignored teams that haven't knocked on the door for a lengthy period of time (Hungary, Austria etc.), and included Croatia rather than Turkey, because of their relatively recent history, AND their past exploits as Yugoslavia. Plus they are a decent team right now.

When Spain claimed the title in 2010, they had reached the 1/4 finals, 5 times beforehand, including a fourth place finish. Of all the times that they had qualified, they had only failed to scale the group stage 3 times.

When we look at the best African teams that have made a relatively deep run, or looked capable of making a deep run, how many of them have done so consistently? The answer is none! That shows that Africa is lacking in the precision department. We are simply not ready.

However, I will go on to say that we should still have the belief that we will go on to win every tournament (even though we are not adequately prepared for it), for it is not entirely unlikely, and self belief can drive a team further than their abilities. Having said that, it is CRUCIAL that we do not dwell on that self-belief, such that it undermines the significance of preparedness. We are not ready, that is something that must sink deep into our heads, and something that we must never forget. Because it will not bode well for future tournaments.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:19 am 
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Sengegal had a 1/4 final goal in 2002. When they got there, they lost the plot, when they could have beaten Turkey and made it further.
It is better to take the first two group games and each knockout game as a final.

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Last edited by Kabalega on Thu Dec 07, 2017 12:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:23 am 
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I have to of course add something to my post about Croatia. (Knowing the way CE works).

We are in a tough group, and Croatia may very well fail to qualify this time around, while Nigeria may qualify.

So I am not declaring right here and now that those teams are going to win the WC, but I am saying that it is more logical to look to those teams as the next WC winners, rather than pulling a Pele and saying that Africa is on the rise and will win the WC by 2018 or 2022. We simply do not have a strong record of consistency in the WC. And when you crunch numbers and do maths, you want to focus on track records.

It is the more logical way of doing things. Even if Nigeria wins the WC, it would still not have changed the credibility of this way of doing things. Just like Leicester winning the PL does not change the likelihood of such an outsider winning the league. And with Leicester, they did not win the PL because of pure fortune, they had a good system that teams struggled to catch.

If we believe that Senegal or Nigeria can BUCK things, on what basis do we draw that from? Apart from self-belief? What revolutionary form of football will take the world by storm, that will see an outsider win the WC for the first time ever. We must have a good reason for making such statements.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:35 am 
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Kabalega wrote:
Sengegal had a 1/4 final goal in 2002. When they got their, they lost the plot, when they could have beaten Turkey and made it further.
It is better to take the first two group games and each knockout game as a final.


As far as winning the WC goes, that 1/4 final showing is hardly impressive. Look at the resume of the teams that have won it. They have an immense amount of consistency, which reflects the precision that Ohsee speaks of.

"Lost the plot", these are things that are more likely to plague inconsistent sides than consistent sides. You see it as, "Oh they were unlucky, a little bit of this and they could have gone farther", I see it as "They lacked the overall organization necessary, and eventually something had to give".

Senegal won ONE game at the World Cup in regulation time, and even if they had gotten past Turkey, that number would have remained the same. So that hardly looks like a team that had the precision to win the tournament. It looked like a team, waiting to lose.

The next NEW WC winner is coming from Europe, if we are not sentimental. I like Ayo Akinfe's thread about how many teams can win the WC, and I do agree with it, with the assumption that those teams will in time develop the necessary tools to be consistent. I like for example how Ayo points to South Africa strengthening its league over time.

Even outside of Europe, you would be looking to sides like Mexico for example, who have a good record of getting into the knockout rounds in the past 30 years. The WC has proven and shown that it is not a random fest, it is not what many people describe it to be. It is not "Get to the Semis and anything is possible", I have heard that here on CE so many times, yet that is incorrect.

The WC is more like "If you weren't prepared to win this title, if you by some fortune make it to the Semis, you will be killed off then". It is NOT a tournament for the unprepared.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:13 pm 
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Tbite makes excellent points. Winning the WC is not just about having the best players but also about having a military level of off-field organisation and discipline. This is why Germany got to the final in 2006 with one of their LEAST talented teams ever...and why Argentina has failed to make the final for nearly a quarter of a century (during which time they have had Messi, Batistuta, Tevez, Crespo, Riqueleme, Cannigia, Ortega, Saviola, Veron, Samuel, Zanetti, Chamot, Almeyda, Sensini, Kily Gonzalez, Claudio Lopez, Ayala, Higuain, Aguero, Dybala, Di Maria, Pastore, and Mascherano playing for their team). Yet they regularly crash out of the WC in the group phase or round 2.


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