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Cape Verde Chase Upset Over Senegal

Cape Verde will face Senegal in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Round of 16 match on Tuesday, kick-off is at 16h00 GMT.

The match is scheduled to be played at the Stade Omnisport de Bafoussam.

Cape Verde secured their place in the knockout stages as one of the four best third-placed teams having finished third in Group A.

Leitão Brito’s side have shown flashes of brilliance, but there’s a sense that they can still go up a gear or two, and the fans of Blue Sharks will hope the challenge offered by knockout football brings the best out of them.

With their in-form duo of Júlio Tavares and Garry Rodrigues, the Blue Sharks will be hoping to cause an upset in the tournament and reach the last four.

“We have been preparing well for such occasions, and even though Senegal is a big team everything will be decided on the pitch. We are motivated and we are not looking at names,” Cape Verde goalkeeper Josimar Dias said in a pre-match interview.

“We are happy with the underdogs tag because it gives us the morale to fire from all cylinders and surprise Senegal who are well known to us. In the group stage they did not score many goals but we know every game is different.”

Meanwhile, Senegal reached the knockout stages as Group B winners and they remain the strong favourites to win this year’s tournament.

The Lions of Teranga are yet to concede a single goal in the competition due to defensive discipline led by the Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly and Edouard Mendy of Chelsea.

Senegal coach Aliou Cisse will be eager to lead his side to an important victory over an unfancied Cape Verde side.

“We have worked so hard in the past week, and I am happy the players have regained their full confidence as we face a Cape Verde team in a Derby that we want to win,” the coach told CAFOnline.

“Cape Verde have a wonderful team, but we are more than ready to face them, considering we can always create surprises when we reach this stage. The rest days have given us time to focus as a team. We are very motivated to get a win in what will be a very good game.”

This will be the 18th meeting between Cape Verde and Senegal with the most recent was on 8 June 2021 in Thies, where the Teranga Lions won 2-0.


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