Senegal, the only African team to win its opening game at the World Cup has already started training for its next match, as they pursue another brilliant run at the tournament they last featured in 2002.
Senegal’s 2-1 win over Poland on Tuesday was celebrated across the continent after the other teams from the continent including Egypt, Tunisia, Nigeria and Morocco lost their opening matches.
Egypt and Morocco were effectively eliminated, after they lost their second consecutive games on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively.
Egypt lost 0-1 to Uruguay, and 1-3 to Russia which prematurely ended the chances of Mohamed Salah and his teammates from advancing to the next stage.
Morocco lost its opening game 0-1 to Iran, before losing by the same scoreline to Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal despite putting on brilliant displays in both games.
Meanwhile, dozens of soccer fans scuffled and threw chairs after a live screening at a Belgian outdoor cafe of Poland’s 2-1 defeat by Senegal.
A police spokesman told Reuters on Wednesday that one person was hurt in the incident in the port city of Antwerp but no arrests were made. Local newspaper Gazet van Antwerpen quoted police as saying some 40-50 people were involved.
Bar manager Johan Peeraer told the paper about 100 Poles and 30 Senegalese supporters were watching the game when things got tense towards the end:
“A bit of an argument started outside and it got out of hand and people started throwing chairs,” he said.
Disturbances around the four-yearly global soccer festival have been rare, a week into the month-long tournament.Can Senegal win the World Cup?
After 16 years away from the world’s biggest football tournament, the Lions of Teranga now dream of surpassing or at the very least matching the run to the quarter-final they made in 2002.
Senegal’s coach, Aliou Cisse, who captained the 2002 side has said he firmly believes that eventually, an African team will win the World Cup.
The second match of Group H of the World Cup between Senegal and Japan will take place next Sunday at the Ekaterinburg stadium.