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Published: Sun, November 12, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Liverpool's Sadio Mane leads Senegal to World Cup as they win away

Liverpool's Sadio Mane leads Senegal to World Cup as they win away

Newsmen report that Diafra Sakho scored the opener for the visitors in Polokwane, before a somewhat fortuitous Thamsanqa Mkhize own goal sealed the three points for the Teranga Lions.

That own goal looked both unavoidable and unfortunate at the same time.

South Africa knew it had to win its last two games to have any chance of making it to Russian Federation, but defeat in Polokwane ends its slim hopes of qualification.

Congratulations to Senegal, though.

Mane continued to prove a handful for the home defenders in a less frenetic second half as Senegal held onto their lead and ensured World Cup qualification.

Senegal seized the second chance it was given by Federation Internationale de Football Association to qualify for the World Cup on Friday, beating South Africa 2-0 in a replay of a game it lost first time round previous year.

Currently, the Senegalese top Group D with eight points from four matches, while Burkina Faso and Cape Verde have six from five, and SA four from four.

Senegal, who were extremely conservative a year ago at this very stadium and lost 2-1 to Bafana under then-coach Shakes Mashaba, were much more aggressive this time around and were clinical in front of goal, as well as resolute in defence.

The other two slots will be filled Saturday with north African countries Tunisia and Morocco needing draws to qualify.

Senegal stunned the world by beating World Cup holders France in their first ever game at the global finals in 2002.

This was a replay of the previous encounter on South African soil between the two sides after Federation Internationale de Football Association alleged that Bafana's win was null and void following an investigation into allegations of match-fixing.

Sadio Mane set up the opening strike against South Africa. Sadio Mané set up Diafra Sakho for a lovely first goal, and Mané was involved in the second as well.

Sakho broke clear and crossed to Mane, whose shot was blocked by Khune only for the clearance to hit Mkhize and trickled back into the net. 'Thank you, South Africa, ' he said.

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