Senegal roar into CAF U17 Quarters, trounce debutante Somalia 3-0.


By Eniola Olatunji

The Junior Lions of Senegal at the Mohammed Hamalaoui Stadium in Algeria roared into the quarterfinals of the AFCON U17 tournament consuming debutante Somalia 3-0 while losing many chances at goal.

Gracious Amara Diouf whose two goals sank the Foxes of Algeria on 2nd of May dribbled two defenders in a row, sold a dummy to the Somalia Goalkeeper and scored his 3rd goal in the 33rd minute. He and other top players were changed later to test other players when the Coach was cockily sure of qualification for the quarters.

Senegal were goal hungry from the onset and an Amara goal was ruled a foul within the first 5 minutes but in the 8th minute he nodded down the turf a flick of a corner kick and pressurized Somali defender, Mohammed Abdi made a ricochet into his net for an own goal. That was the first goal of the night.

The Stats really proved Somali were inexperienced and tossed about by the Senegalese whose teams at three other levels including Men’s Senior; U23 and Beach Soccer are ruling the continent Senegal had 30 shots at goal with 6 on target which was scary to the Somalis who had 3 shots at goal and none on target.

The ball Possession was 62-38 in favor of Senegal; the West African country stringed 422 passes with 80% accuracy against 276 with 65% accuracy; there were 13-1 corner kicks in favor of Senegal showing that with the achievements of the Senegalese they were still not clinical..

Both Somali and Senegal has never met in any encounter at this level as Somali just qualified for the Continental finals for the first time. Senegal has been to the party twice in 2011 and at the last competition in Tanzania 2019 but fell at group stage on each occasion.

And so Senegal topped the Group B with full 9 points and with a clean slate meaning they are yet to concede a goal scoring 7 goals. Hosts Algeria clinched the second spot with 4 points but scored 3 goals and conceded 4; Congo will need to wait till Sunday to be among the lucky losers to qualify for the quarterfinals as the team made 2 points, scored 2 goals and conceded 3 while debutantes Somalia will take the available flight home in the next 48 hours having only a point, scored a goal and conceded 6.

Tomorrow Saturday, Nigeria will test strength against South Africa while Zambia will face Morocco both matches will be played simultaneously at 2000 hours in Group B.

On Sunday at 2000 hours Mali will be watching Burkina Faso slug it out with the Cub Lions of Cameroon in Group C as Southern Sudan which should have played the Malians has been disqualified.

Already the fixtures for the quarterfinals are taking shape. Senegal will meet the team from group B or C on the 10th of May at Constantine; Morocco will line up against hosts Algeria at Anaba on 11th May; Mali will meet Congo at Algiers on 11th May and the Group B Runners Up will slug it out with Group C Runners up at Algiers on 11th May.
Eniola Olatunji reporting for Patmos Media Line.

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