Ecuador 1-2 Senegal: Lions Of Teranga Roar Into Last 16 For First Time In 20 Years

Kalidou Koulibaly’s controlled volley was the winner as Senegal defeated Ecuador to reach the knockout stages of the World Cup for the first time since 2002.

Moisés Caicedo had cancelled out Ismaïla Sarr’s earlier penalty, but the Senegal captain restored the Lions of Teranga’s advantage shortly afterwards in what would prove the deciding goal.

The USA are playing later today, but if you asked one of their fans to explain basketball, you could’ve been forgiven for thinking they were describing the first breathless half an hour of this game. The pace was frantic, the play direct and vertical, as both sides took turns to attack.

Ecuador started with both their full backs pushed very high up the pitch, a particularly brave tactic given the pace of the Senegal wide players, and the fact that Aliou Cissé’s men were happy to press those full backs man-for-man. The same Senegal who came into this game with the joint-most shot-ending high turnovers thus far in the competition. Idrissa Gueye was his usual hive of activity, playing in an advanced role just off the main forward, as the Lions of Teranga looked to exploit the spaces in behind Ecuador’s defence. He had an early attempt before Boulaye Dia dragged a really good chance (worth 0.3 xG) wide.

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