Wednesday, April 5, 2023
[email protected]

hat the Senegalese are the new soccer kings of African men's soccer, is no longer news. That they truly deserve the African soccer diadem, is well known to all and sundry, and thus beyond dispute. We all saw it coming from the gradual build-up of the Senegalese in the last twenty-two years! When they nearly caused the first 'soccer earthquake' for Africa, by nearly eliminating co-hosts Nigeria in the quarter-finals of the 2000 edition of the African Nations' cup tournament in Lagos.

It took virtually a last minute rally by Nigeria, more especially, under impulse of the then recovering Sunday Oliseh, who was virtually 'dragged' out of his recovering situation from an illness, by then Coach Bonfree Jo, to provide his characteristic/ trade mark long and pin-point passes to wonder boy : Julius Aghahowa, to score two vital goals that saved Nigeria from the embarrassment of a quarter-final elimination from the 2000 Nations' cup' competition. Details of this epic clash and other interesting soccer stories of the Super Eagles of Nigeria are chronicled in my book: "Super Eagles of Nigeria: Pride of Africa", which reference is given at the end of this piece.

The Senegalese continued their upward march in African / global soccer, in 2002, by not only eliminating Nigeria, in the semi-finals of that year's edition of the Nations' cup tournament, and getting to the final, but nearly caused another 'soccer earth quake' by taking the highly talented "Indomitable Lions" of Cameroun to the penalty shoot-out series, before going down gallantly.

At the 2002 World cup tournament, they finally caused a global 'soccer earthquake', by defeating defending champions France in the world cup's opening's match. They went on to get to the highest African placing so far at the World cup, by getting to the quarter-finals of the 2002 World cup competition.

Another lost 2019 Nations cup final match to Algeria, further signalled to all and sundry that the Senegalese were a hair breath's away from the ultimate title in African soccer!

Before the start of the 2021 edition of the Nations' cup tournament, they were rated as one of the favourites for the title. And they lived up to expectations, by finally claiming a title that had fortuitously eluded them on two previous occasions. They were, thus, finally, crowned the new soccer kings of African men's soccer; and justifiably so!

The Senegalese have a rich history in soccer, more especially, African soccer. One remembers, as a young man, the historic/legendary soccer battles that involved the Super Eagles of Nigeria, then known as the "Green Eagles" and the Senegalese Lions, for qualification for the 1978 Nations' cup tournament, held in Ghana. The Super Eagles had to literally and figuratively overcome a huge natural and man-made obstacles, to qualify for the 1978 Nations' cup competition. Details of the epic, scary and still interesting soccer battles are chronicled in my book: "Super Eagles of Nigeria: Pride of Africa", which reference is given at end of this piece.

One also remembers the clash of the titans between the Rangers International Football club of Enugu and the "Police of Senegal" soccer team. Battles that were not only epic in nature but also produced scary moments : when Rangers won the qualification to the next round of the 1977 African cup winners' cup competition over the Senegalese at home in Dakar, they were surrounded by irate Senegalese soccer fans who wanted to 'devour' them for eliminating their team. The situation was so bad that the Rangers players were tightly protected by the Senegalese security agents and the then Head of state: General Olusegun Obasanjo Rtd, had to send an aircraft to ferry home Rangers players and their officials, as soon as that was possible!

The Senegalese without doubt are great soccer enthusiasts, and can also be fanatical with regards supporting their teams. And are also great competitors on and off the field of play! They usually give it their all, and have a never-say-die spirit! Given their intrinsic qualities, more especially with regards soccer, it's thus not surprising they finally climbed to the absolute top of African soccer; and with the potential to do even more, even on the global stage.

In conclusion, a very big congratulations to them. They truly deserve it.



and "Super Eagles of Nigeria in the New Era", also presently on sale on www. Amazon.com


Also at the link below, one can come into contact with a number of items, needed to support the Super Eagles at "Cameroun 2021" !!!!!


The book "Super Eagles of Nigeria : Pride of Africa", can also be gotten through the author. One can contact the author through : [email protected] Please note in this case, payment of postage costs will be necessary