Koulibaly decides for Senegal to advance and eliminate Ecuador

He went out to tie and ended up losing. Ecuador could not see the dream of qualifying for the round of 16 of the World Cup in Qatar come true, after losing 2-1 against Senegal, this Tuesday at the Khalifa International Stadium in Qatar.

Senegal took the lead shortly before the break with a penalty converted by Ismaila Sarr (42) and equalized after the hour by Moisés Caicedo, a result that qualified Ecuador, but two minutes later, Kalidou Koulibaly ended the hopes of advancing from the Tri (70).

Ecuador, which won its debut against Qatar (2-0) and drew 1-1 against the Netherlands, closes its participation in group A with 4 points, to 6 for Senegal and 7 for the Netherlands, which in the another game of the key defeated the host (2-0).

In this decisive match, the young team coached by Gustavo Alfaro received a bath of realism. As much as they have played against Brazil and Argentina in the qualifiers, a World Cup ‘final’ is something else. And Senegal, current champion of Africa, has more experience in this type of encounter.

No shot between sticks in the first part
Senegal, who was only worth the victory to qualify, began by taking the initiative of the match and having the first two great scoring chances. The first was a run from the left by Ismaila Sarr and his cross was finished off by Idrissa Gueye at the side of the net (2). In the second, Boulaye Dia crossed the ball too much when he found himself alone against Hernán Galíndez (8).

Aliou Cissé showed that he had studied Ecuador very well and attacked them on the wings, especially on the right, where Youssouf Sabaly and Iliman Ndiaye, one of the novelties in the starting eleven, were ahead of Pervis Estupiñán.

And in the 18th minute Senegal had the third, in a body won by Ismaila Sarr against Ángelo Preciado and when he stepped on the area he took a threaded right hand that brushed the top of the South American goal.

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Ecuador tried to defend itself by keeping the ball, but offensively they did not propose much either to put fear in the body of the Africans.

And just before the break came the prize that Senegal had deserved, in another attack on the left of Sarr, who was brought down by Piero Hincapié inside the area. The penalty was converted by the Watford striker himself, deceiving Galíndez, at 1-0.

More ambition in the second period
At the break, Ecuador had to change their ‘chip’. He no longer had anything to defend and he had no choice but to score. Alfaro understood it that way and left Alan Franco and Carlos Gruezo in the locker room, the two novelties of the starting eleven, to put in Jeremy Sarmiento and José Cifuentes, who as soon as they started made the first shot between the sticks of the Tri (49).

Ecuador took the initiative of the game in the second half, but it was difficult for them to find a way to damage the Senegalese defense until a corner kick taken from the right flied the ball Félix Torres and, only, at the far post, Caicedo pushed it to the network (68).

The joy did not last long for the Ecuadorians, who saw how a bad rebound from the defense in a lateral free kick was taken advantage of by Koulibaly to put the Africans back in the lead (70).

Ecuador tried until the end and Gonzalo Plata had a chance in a forced shot that was saved by Edouard Mendy (75), but there were too few merits to dream of qualifying.

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