Thursday, December 21, 2017

Senegal Greatest All-Time Team

Senegal 2002

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Africa All-Time Team GhanaCameroonNigeriaSouth AfricaTunisia
AlgeriaMoroccoEgyptIvory CoastSenegal,
North Africa
The Rest of Africa(excluding Cameroon, Senegal, Ghana, Ivory Coast, South Africa, Nigeria and North Africa).

Senegal made its first FIFA World Cup appearance in 2002 and caused a huge upset by defeating World and European champions France 1–0 in the tournament's opening game. Senegal eventually reached the quarter-finals of the 2002 World Cup. In  2018, Senegal qualified for their second World Cup Finals.

GK: Tony Sylva 
Tony Sylva was a member of AS Monaco from 1993 and 2004, mainly as a backup to Fabien Barthez and Flavio Roma in the main squad or out on loan.  In 2004, he joined Lille, where he became a starter. He played for them between 2004 and 2008. He also spent two seasons playing for Trabzonspor in Turkey.  He was capped 83 times.  He was the starter at the World Cup Finals in 2002 and and four Africa Cup of Nations tournaments.
Tony Sylva 
GK: Cheikh Seck 
Seck was goalkeeper for (Senegal's national team) during the 1980-90s. He takes part in four final rounds of African Cups of Nations in 1986, 1990, 1992 and 1994.  For club football, he played Jaraaf (Diaraf) in Dakar before joining  Esperance Tunis and Stade Tunisien in Tunisia.  He was voted by CAF as 200 Greatest African Footballers in 2006.

GK: Amady Thiam
For club football, Amady Thiam played for Jeanne d’Arc in Senegal. He represented Senegal at the 1968 African Cup of Nations. Thiam was the starting keeper, despite strong challenge from Toumani Diallo. Unfortunately, he was remembered for a blooper against Congo at the end of the game that eliminated Senegal from the tournament.

RB: Habib Beye 
Born in France, Habib Beye started with Paris St Germain in 1997.  The peak of his career was spent with RC Strasbourg, Marseilles and Newcastle United. He was captain of Marseilles for two years prior to his move to Newcastle United in 2007.  He was Newcastle United Player of the Year in 2008. He also played for Aston Villa.  He was capped 35 times for Senegal.  He went to the World Cup Finals in 2002, mainly used as a sub.

RB: Ferdinand Coly 
Born in Senegal, Ferdinand Coly grew up in France. After having an impressive performance at the World Cup Finals in 2002, he moved from RC Lens to the English Preimership, but failed to impress with Birmingham City.  Coly then moved on to Perugia in 2003, but he spent his career in the lower division. In the summer of 2005, he made a move to Serie A side Parma, where he has been a regular player.
Ferdinand Coly 
CB: Kalidou Koulibaly
Born in France of Senegalese parents, Koulibaly represented France at the youth level, but he switched to play for Senegal in 2015.  He went to the World Cup Finals in 2018. He started his career with Metz in France.  He later played for Genk.  In 2014, he moved to Napoli, where he became a star player. 

CB/RB: Yérim Diagne 
Yérim Diagne was born in Senegal,  He played for Senegal between 1963 and 1973. He went to the African Nations Cups of 1965 and 1968. He helped Senegal to finish fourth in 1965. His club career was spent at Réveil de Saint-Louis and Brak de Saint-Louis in Senegal. He died in 2014. 

CB: Domingo Mendy
Domingo Mendy was the captain of his club team Jeanne d'Arc. He was also the captain of the national team of Senegal under the leadership of Raoul Diagne, the national coach of Senegal in the early 60s.  Information about his career is very limited.

CB/DM: Papa Bouba Diop 
Papa Bouba Drop started his career at home in Senegal before making his way to Switzerland. In 2002, he moved to France's Lens. Two years later, he moved to England, first playing for Fulham and then, Portsmouth.  He also played in Greece. He was capped 63 times by Senegal.  He was known for scoring the goal that upset France at the World Cup Finals in 2002.  He ended up as Senegal's top scorer at the tournament.
Papa Bouba Diop 
CB: Roger Mendy 
Roger Mendy spent three years playing for AS Monaco, with whom he reached the 1992 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup Final. He also had spells with Sporting Toulon and ASC Jeanne d'Arc before finishing his career in Italy with Pescara Calcio. He earned over 80 caps between 1979 and 1995.  He participated at the African Nations' Cup in 1992.

LB: Ibrahima Ba Eusebio 
Ibrahima Ba Eusebio played in  Dakar with Jaraaf (Diaraf). He also went to play in Europe with Le Havre AC in France. He played for them between 1977 and 1982. He helped the club to win promotion. He also played with SC Abbeville after Le Havre. With Senegal, he was also captain of the national team. He is the father of former French international Ibrahim Ba, who also played for Le Havre.

DM: Aliou Cissé
Aliou Cissé had 35 caps.  He captained the Senegal national team which reached the quarter-finals of the 2002 World Cup. He was also part of the Senegal team who were the runners-up in the 2002 African Cup of Nations. He started his career in France.  He played with with Lille, PSG and Montpellier.  After the WC Finals in 2002, he moved to England and played for Birmingham and, Portsmouth.  He later played for Sedam and Nimes in France.

AM/FW/DM: Oumar Sène
In his career, Oumar Sène had played as an attack midfielder, striker and defensive midfielder.  He first starred with US Gorée at home before going to play in France. He first joined Stade Lavalois Michel Le Milinaire before going to Paris St Germaine in 1985 and was named captain of the club in 1987. He retired from the club in 1992.  He was capped for Senegal between 1982 and 1992.

CM: Loris Gomis 
Loris Gomis was born in 1945 in Senegal.  He played in France in the 1970's with SC Amiens, FC Bourges and Thonon Sports Club in the lower divisions.  He played for Coach Jean-Pierre Carayon at Thonon SC.  Internationally, he helped Senegal to qualify for the African Cup of Nations in 1968 beating Guinea, a powerful team at the time.

CM: Christophe Sagna
Christophe Sagna started with Jeanne d'Arc in 1974. He moved to France in 1976. He played 106 games with Stade Laval, scoring 12 goals. He played for En Avant de Guingamp between 1982 and 1985=4.  And then, he joined Stade Quimpérois.  For international football, he had over 30 caps for Senegal. He went to the 1986 African Nations Cup.

AM:Yatma Diop 
Born in Dakar, Senegal in 1943, Yatma Diop was one of the first Senegalese player to play in Europe. He started his career at home with Foyer France in Sénégal. In 1963, he moved to played in France, where he played with Football Club d'Annecy and Amiens in the 1960's. He also played for Diaraf at home. He helped Senegal to qualify for the African Cup of Nations in 1968 beating Guinea in the qualifying round, a powerful team at the time.
Yatma Diop
AM: Khalilou Fadiga 
Khalilou Fadiga began his career at Paris Saint-Germain in France, but failed to make an impression. He played for Red Star 93, FC Liège and Club Brugge.  After impressing with Auxerre, he moved to Inter Milan, but never played a game.  He later played with Bolton Wanderers, Derby, Coventry, Gent, etc.  He was capped 37 times.  He played in the 2002 World Cup Finals. 

LW: Sadio Mané
Sadio Mané stated with Metz.  He made his name while playing for Red Bill Salzburg and Southampton. In 2016, he became the most expensive African player in history at that time when he joined Liverpool.  Mané, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho made up a prolific attacking quartet dubbed the "Fab Four".  He helped the club to reach the Final of the 2018 Champions' League. He scored a goal in the Final.  For Senegal, he played for them at the World Cup Finals in 2018.  
Sadio Mané
FW/LW/RW: El-Hadji Diouf 
El-Hadji Diouf played with Sochaux, Rennes and Lens in France before moving to Liverpool prior to the 2002 FIFA World Cup for Senegal. He has also played for Bolton Wanderers, Sunderland and Blackburn Rovers before a stint in the Scottish Premier League with Rangers. He also played for Doncaster Rovers and Leeds United. He earned 70 caps.  He was a star at the World Cup Finals in 2002, where he made the team of the tournament.  He was African Footballer of the Year in 2001 and 2002
El-Hadji Diouf 
ST: Matar Niang 
Born in 1944, Matar Niang was an early star of Senegal's national team. He went to African Cup of Nations in 1965, scoring two goals against Ethiopia. Senegal finished fourth in the tournament. He missed the 1968 edition.  He played in French second division clubs between 1969 and 1974.

ST: Henri Camara 
Henri Camara played for various clubs around Europe.  His most successful years were spent in England and Greece.  His longest stint was spent with Panetolikos in Greece where he played between 2011 and 2014.  He was also Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. Player of the Year in 2005. He earned 99 caps for Senegal.  He was a part of the World Cup team in 2002, scoring two goals against Sweden in the round of 16.  He was also part of the 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008 Africa Cup of Nations squads.
 Henri Camara 
ST: Sarr Boubacar 
Sarr Boubacar played in France during the 1970's and 1980's for SC Toulon, Marseille, AS Cannes, Paris Saint-Germain and FC Martigues.  At the end of his career, he played in the United States with New Jersey City. He was an important member of both Marseille and PSG. He had two stints with Marseille while playing form PSG (1979-1983) in between. He went the 1986 and 1994 African Cup of Nations.

ST: Jules Bocande 
Jules Bocande started his career with Casa Sport in Senegal.  After getting a tough suspension at hime, he moved to play in Europe.  He played Tournai (Belgian D3) and Seraing (Belgian D1) before going to France. He played for FC Metz, Paris SG, OGC Nice and RC Lens. In the 1985-1986 season, he finished top scorer in the French league with 23 goals. Jules Bocandé was capped over 70 times.  He was the key player in qualifying his country for the 1986 African Cup of Nations in Egypt. 
Jules Bocande 

Honorable Mention
Idrissa Gueye, Baba Touré, Diomansy Kamara, Omar Daf, Moussa N'Diaye, Mamadou Niang, Louis Camara, Moussa Ndao, Moussa Sow, Cheikhou Kouyaté, Idrissa Gueye, Mbaye Fall, Lamine Diatta.

Squad Explanation
-- I have not much information on players from the1960's. All I knew that they did well in the African Nations Cup and was widely considered one of Senegal's greatest team. I selected the following players from that era: Domingos Mendy, Matar Niang Yatma Diop Loris Gomis Yérim Diagne and Amady Thiam.
-- Senegal used a team 21 French-based players to play in the 2002 World Cup Finals.  Their two non-French based players were their two backup goalkeepers.  They beat the defending World Cup winner France in the first round. They advanced to the the second round.  I have nine players from that team on my all-time team.  They are Tony Sylva, Habib Beye, Ferdinand Coly, Papa Bouba Diop, Aliou Cissé, Khalilou Fadiga,  El-Hadji Diouf and Henri Camara.
-- Liked most African all-time teams, this is a young team.  The oldest players played in the early 1960's.
-- Ibrahima Ba Eusebio is the father of French forward Ibrahima Ba who played for France and AC Milan. Ibrahim Ba Junior was born in Senegal.
-- Bacary Sagna, Patrice Evra and Patrick Vieira are born in Senegal, but they chose to play for France.  Of course, they are not considered for this team. 
-- After the World Cup Finals in 2018, I added Idrissa Gueye, Moussa Sow and Cheikhou Kouyaté to honourable mention.  Sadio Mané replaced Mbaye Fall on the team. I dropped Fall because of the lack of information on him. 
-- Sadio Mané helped Liverpool to win the Champions' league in 2019. He is probably one of the best wingers in the world at the moment.  He won the Onze d'Or for the 2018-2019 season.  No Senegalese footballer achieved that.
-- Mbaye Fall and Mendy Domingos are often listed as Senegal's greatest footballers, but I do not know much about them, except their names. I did my best to study them.  Sometimes, African source is hard to come by. Mbaye Fall's career was associated with ASC Diaraf Dakar.  He was known for his powerful shots. Her is regarded as one of Senegal's greatest players.  He played in the 1970's. I have dropped Mbaye Fall and I will drop Mendy Domingos eventually due to the lack of information.
-- El Hadji Diouf was the African Footballer of the Year in 2001 and 2002.  He was a hero of the 2002 World Cup Finals, but his career went south after the 2002 World Cup Finals. I still honored him with his performance in the World Cup Finals.  
-- In 2019, I decided to replace Lamine Diatta with Kalidou Koulibaly. Since Kalidou Koulibaly joined Napoli in 2014, he has became one of Serie A top defender.  He was their Defender of the Year in Serie A for the 2018-2019. season.
-- Jules Bocandé was honored by the CAF by winning the Legends Award in 2009.  The award is liked a hall of fame for the CAF.


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