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Jan 25, 2022 at 4pm UK
Senegal
2 - 0
Cape Verde
Mane (63'), Dieng (90+2')
Mendy (72')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Andrade (21'), Vozinha (57')

Preview: Senegal vs. Cape Verde - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Senegal vs. Cape Verde - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Tuesday's Africa Cup of Nations clash between Senegal and Cape Verde, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Senegal continue their quest to conquer the continent for the first time ever when they take on Cape Verde at the Stade Omnisports de Bafoussam in the last 16 of the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday.

The Blue Sharks head into the game without a knockout-stage win in their previous two appearances at the tournament and will be desperate to end this dry spell.


Match preview

While it is safe to say Senegal have not exactly lit up the Africa Cup of Nations, they have scaled through the first hurdle and made it to the knockout stages all the same.

Having enjoyed a stellar qualification campaign, where they picked up 14 points from 18 available, Aliou Cisse's men needed a 97th-minute penalty which was clinically executed by Sadio Mane to see off Zimbabwe in their opening game on January 10.

This was followed by an uneventful goalless draw with Guinea in their second group outing two Fridays ago before finally wrapping things up in the group stages with yet another 0-0 draw with Malawi last time out.

However, with five points from three games, the Lions of Teranga secured top spot in Group B, one point above Guinea and Malawi, who finished level on four points, to secure smooth passage to the round of 16.

Senegal now head into the knockout stages as the only side to make it to multiple AFCON finals without claiming the title after losing on penalties to Cameroon back in 2002 and suffering a 1-0 loss at the hands of Algeria in Egypt three years ago.

Despite their lack of sting in attack, the West Africans remain the only side yet to concede a goal at the tournament, and this has been owing to their star-studded defensive unit which included the likes of Abdou Diallo, Kalidou Koulibaly and Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.

Cape Verde, on the other hand, are one of the four best third-placed sides from the group stages having picked up four points from six games in Group A.

The Blue Sharks kicked off their AFCON run with a 1-0 victory over Ethiopia on January 9 courtesy of Julio Tavares's 45th-minute strike, before crashing back down to earth four days later when they lost by the same scoreline Burkina Faso.

Cape Verde wrapped things up in the group stages last time out when they put on a resilient performance to come from behind and salvage a 1-1 draw against host nation Cameroon.

Bubista's men come into Tuesday's game unbeaten in all but one of their last seven games in all competitions, picking up four wins and two draws in that time.

While Cape Verde will look to maintain this fine run and end their wait for a first knockout-stage victory, standing in their way is an opposing side who have won each of the last three meetings between the teams since 2016, scoring six goals and conceding none.

Senegal Africa Cup of Nations form:
  • W
  • D
  • D

Senegal form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • D

Cape Verde Africa Cup of Nations form:
  • W
  • L
  • D

Cape Verde form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • D


Team News

After an excellent defensive display in the opening three games, we expect Cisse to name an unchanged back four of Bouna Sarr, Koulibaly, Diallo and Saliou Ciss shielding Mendy in goal.

Idrissa Gueye has been solid in his two outings at the tournament and we expect the Paris Saint-Germain midfielder to handle business at the centre of the park.

Mane, who has scored the only goal for Senegal so far, should lead the attack once again, with Keita Balde and Boulaye Dia providing support on either flank once again.

Cheikhou Kouyate will play no part in Tuesday's game as the Crystal Palace man will serve a one-match suspension after picking up a yellow card for the second straight game against Malawi last time out.

Like the Lions of Teranga, Cape Verde have enjoyed an injury-free run at the tournament so far and will once again head into the game with a clean bill of health and no suspension concerns.

After starting from the bench against Cameroon last time out, Olympiacos man Rodrigues came on at half time to level the scores and the 31-year-old could be restored to the starting side on Tuesday.

Senegal possible starting lineup:
E Mendy; Sarr, Koulibaly, A Diallo, Ciss; P Gueye, N Mendy, I Gueye; H Diallo, Mane, Dia

Cape Verde possible starting lineup:
Vozinha; S Fortes, Lopes, Stopira; J Fortes, Andrade, Santos, D Tavares; Rodrigues, Semedo, Monteiro


We say: Senegal 2-0 Cape Verde

While Senegal have endured a quiet start to the tournament, they boast a star-studded squad capable of finally ending their long wait for continental glory. Looking at the gulf in quality and experience between the nations, we are tipping the Lions of Teranga to comfortably claim the win in regular time.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 2.5:curl



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