WORLD CUP PREVIEW

AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

WORLD CUP PREVIEW Tues: Ecuador v Senegal

Ecuador have been the surprise package so far at this World Cup, producing two impressive performances so far, and will be hoping to top it off with qualification through to the knockout stages when they face Senegal at the Khalifa International Stadium on Tuesday.

In Ecuador’s first game, which was the tournament’s opening match, Gustavo Alfaro’s side swept aside hosts Qatar with Enner Valencia – a player we highlighted in our pre-tournament team guide – grabbing both goals in a 2-0 win; a result that, in all honesty, flattered Qatar.

They backed that up with an impressive performance against the Netherlands in game two where they managed to hold Louis Van Gaal’s side, who have been tipped by many to go deep into this tournament, to a 1-1 draw with Valencia getting on the scoresheet again.

Now, they will be out to complete the job and secure a result that will see them go through to the knockout stages of the World Cup for just the second time in their history.

However, Valencia – who has been so crucial to their early success at this tournament – will not be available for them after he was carried off that 1-1 draw with the Netherlands on a stretcher.

How Ecuador fill that void at the top of the pitch will be crucial. Brighton & Hove Albion forward Jeremy Sarmiento and Imbabura man Kevin Rodriguez are two candidates to replace Valencia, but will they be able to fill his shoes?

Ecuador v Senegal
FIFA World Cup Group A
15:00 ITV4 / ITVX / STV Player

HEAD-TO-HEAD
MAY 2002 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Ecuador 0-1 Senegal

ECUADOR

SEP 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Saudi Arabia 0-0 Ecuador
SEP 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Japan 0-0 Ecuador
NOV 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Ecuador 0-0 Iraq
NOV 2022 FIFA WORLD CUP Qatar 0-2 Ecuador
NOV 2022 FIFA WORLD CUP Netherlands 1-1 Ecuador

SENEGAL

JUL 2022 COSAFA CUP Mozambique 1-1 Senegal
SEP 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Bolivia 0-2 Senegal
SEP 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Senegal 1-1 Iran
NOV 2022 FIFA WORLD CUP Senegal 0-2 Netherlands
NOV 2022 FIFA WORLD CUP Qatar 1-3 Senegal

Senegal were tipped by many to be the ‘dark horses’ of this tournament, but they face an early exit from the 2022 World Cup unless they can get a positive result against Ecuador on Tuesday afternoon.

Of course, they have been rocked by the late loss of Sadio Mane to injury, but things have not quite clicked so far for Senegal at this tournament.

They were beaten 2-0 by the Netherlands in their first game and, although they did win against Qatar in game two, there were spells where they did look uncomfortable in a game that should have been far more secure for them.

There were rumours that goalkeeper Eduoard Mendy was going to be dropped from the side after his mistake in the opening match against the Netherlands, but he kept his place against Qatar and looked far more assured between the sticks.

This is a tricky one to call, but I think this is Ecuador’s time to shine and I expect them to come through here and qualify for the knockout stages of the World Cup. They have been good in both of their games so far and their defensive record suggests it could be a tough afternoon for Senegal’s forwards.

JOE CITRONE


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PROFIT/LOSS (WORLD CUP 2022): LOSS 41.00 points (after matches on Mon 28 Nov, includes TWO GOOD bonus on CAMEROON v SERBIA 28 Nov)
(Will include returns from both the OUTRIGHT and SPECIALS previews too)


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