Senegal’s squad for the 2022 World Cup will be without Sadio Mane, after the Bayern Munich star pulled out of the tournament with an injury.
Senegal were drawn into Group A at the Qatar World Cup and will need to navigate previous games against hosts Qatar, Ecuador and the Netherlands if they are to reach the knockout stages.
Africa’s best team in the past 18 months travel to Qatar with a strong and experienced core, with up to six of their starting line-up potentially having experience from the Russia 2018 World Cup.
They overcame a long-standing mentality problem. They are no longer put off when they score a goal, having overturned a first leg defeat in the play-off against Egypt to progress on penalties with a deserved victory in Dakar. As for motivation, the pain of coming out of the last World Cup on accumulated yellow cards – Japan reaching knockouts instead via the fair play rule – should add a little extra.
Their defense is a major strength of the team, having conceded just two goals en route to AFCON glory and a paltry five goals in eight World Cup qualifiers. Milan left-back Fode Ballo-Touré quietly excelled, and Monaco’s Ismail Jakobs declared for Senegal. Centre-backs Abdou Diallo and Kalidou Koulibaly are regulars in the Champions League, the latter for Chelsea ahead of the superb Eduoard Mendy. And on the right, Real Betis’ Youssof Sabaly is a great assistant to Bayern Munich’s Bouna Sarr, who has had knee surgery.
However, they have an ever-changing midfield which can cause problems. Cheikhoiu Kouyate and Idrissa Gueye have passed their peak, Pape Matar Sarr has not reached his peak yet, and Nampalys Mendy probably never had one.
Senegal squad for the 2022 World Cup
Senegal squad for the 2022 World Cup: The last 26-man squad
- G: Edouard Mendy (Chelsea)
- G: Alfred Gomis (Rennes)
- GK: Seny Dieng (QPR)
- Defender: Kalidou Koulibaly (Chelsea)
- Defender: Pape Abou Cisse (Olympiacos)
- Defender: Fode Ballo-Touré (AC Milan)
- Defender: Ismail Jakobs (Monaco)
- Defender: Formose Mendy (Amiens)
- Defender: Abdou Diallo (RB Leipzig)
- Defender: Youssouf Sabaly (Real Betis)
- Midfielder: Idrissa Gueye (Everton)
- MF: Pathé Ciss (Rayo Vallecano)
- MF: Cheikhou Kouyate (Nottingham Forest)
- MF: Pape Gueye (Marseille)
- Midfielder: Krepin Diatta (Monaco)
- MF: Nampalys Mendy (Leicester City)
- MF: Pape Matar Sarr (Tottenham)
- MF: Mamadou Loum (Reading)
- MF: Name of Moustapha (Pafos)
- AT: Boulaye Dia (Salernitana)
- AT: Bamba Dieng (Marseille)
- AT: Ismaila Sarr (Watford)
- AT: Iliman Ndiaye (Sheffield United)
- AT: Famara Diedhiou (Alanyaspor)
- AT: Nicolas Jackson (Villarreal)
Senegal top scorers
1 goal: Bamba Dieng, Famara Diedhiou, Boulaye Dia
Senegal yellow cards
1 yellow card: Nampalys Mendy, Idrissa Gana Gueye. Boulaye Dia, Ismail Jakobs, Pathé Ciss
Who is Senegal’s coach for the 2022 World Cup?
Calm dignity, as opposed to tactical magic, has earned Aliou Cisse the respect of his players and the Senegalese FA – few African nations stay with a coach for seven years. The former Birmingham and Portsmouth midfielder brought his country their maiden AFCON title earlier this year; now they are expected to spearhead Africa’s charge in Qatar.
How many players are Senegal allowed to take to the 2022 World Cup?
National managers were allowed to bring 26 players to last summer’s European Championship for the first time at a major tournament, as a special measure introduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic – while the Last year’s Copa America allowed teams of 28 players.
It has now been announced that 26-man squads will return for the Qatar World Cup, an extension of the usual 23-man squads.