Sadio and Senegal see off Poland

Sadio Mane can be a thorn in Poland's side on Tuesday

Sadio Mane can be a thorn in Poland’s side on Tuesday

The Lions of Teranga held on for a 2-1 win over Poland on Tuesday night and opened the World Cup with a surprising victory - just like in 2002.

But 42-year-old Cisse, who who captained the 2002 World Cup team and played much of his time in France, said Tuesday's win at Senegal's World Cup return could not really be compared to the impact of the victory of 16 years ago.

Senegal player react after an own goal by Thiago Cionek during the FIFA World Cup 2018 group H preliminary round soccer match between Poland and Senegal in Moscow.

Senegal extended their lead in somewhat controversial fashion when Niane was allowed back on the field following his injury and promptly latched onto an outrageously sloppy back pass to bundle the ball into the back of the net. No surprises then that the coach and the players are underlining the importance of this match against Senegal.

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Senegal knew what they needed to do thereafter, holding off Poland to take their advantage into the second half, when they tightened the back and still surged forward on the break.

"But it does not change the fact that we lacked concentration at the beginning of the second half, because it seems that we could have played a different game, if they hadn't scored the second".

"We saw the other African teams lose their first games and it gave us power to play for Africa", unused substitute Diafra Sakho said.

Poland were abject for much of the contest at Spartak Stadium, although Krychowiak did grab a late consolation, and, to his credit, Nawalka didn't try to place the blame for his side's defeat exclusively on Niang's goal. "OK, it's important to get off to a good start but the second and third matches are important as well, so hopefully Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Nigeria will step up".

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Aliou Cissé's Senegal will not strike fear into too many at this World Cup but were undoubtedly the better of the two sides and deserving of the three points. In a video that has gone viral on Twitter, a bunch of Senegal football fans were seen cleaning up the stadium area where they were sitting during the match. "Every time they made a mistake we were able to find the movement we needed and get back at them".

Meanwhile, as for the actual game, Senegal shocked Poland by securing all three points thanks to an own-goal and M'Baye Niang.

Liverpool forward Sadio Mane laid the ball off to Everton counterpart Idrissa Gana Gueye, whose following effort was deflected into Poland's net by defender Thiago Cionek.

Lewandowski sprang into life five minutes after halftime as he won possession, burst clear and was up-ended by Salif Sané.

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Lewandowski was heavily marked, but apart from a weak shot on the turn that went wide and a free-kick that was easily saved he posed little threat to the Senegal goal.

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