Africa’s last remaining World Cup side were booted out of the competition on the “fair play” rule after suffering an agonizing defeat at the hands of Colombia.
By SportBrief Reporter
While the 1-0 defeat left Senegal tied in second position with Japan on points and goal difference, the Asian side will progress based on fair play rule with Senegal having conceded more yellow cards than the asians.
Although we as Africans are inclined to feel for our fellow brothers, in all fairness, the game appeared Senegal’s to lose for large parts of the match with Colombia looking sluggish particularly in the first half.
And indeed Aliou Cisse’s side, denied a first-half penalty when VAR judged that Tottenham’s Davinson Sanchez had made a legal lunge on Liverpool’s Sadio Mane, had looked set to finish behind Japan, with their opponents facing an early exit.
But the Loins of Teranga looked casual at times, seemingly content with settling for a draw which they knew would be enough to see them through as a Poland goal in Volgograd looked to be sending both teams in Samara to the last 16.
However, the African side would pay dearly for their complacency as in the 74th minute, Yerry Mina’s header provided a decisive twist, ensuring Jose Pekerman’s men triumphed and Senegal, by virtue of their yellow-card tally, were ousted.
Colombia, on the other hand, qualify for the World Cup knockout stage as Group H winners alongside Japan.
The South American side, who overcame the premature exit of injured James Rodriguez, will now play Group G’s second-placed side – either England or Belgium – in Moscow on Tuesday, with Japan facing the winners of that group in Rostov-on-Don a day earlier.