Africa showing few signs of making FIFA World Cup 2018 breakthrough

Arnold Nichols
June 24, 2018

The West Africans defeated defending champions France in Seoul in their opening match in 2002.

Niang, who returned to the field from treatment, later beat Szczesny to double the lead in the 60th.

Africa's much-awaited and coveted tilt at World Cup glory looks as far off as ever after a dismal round of opening fixtures for the continent's teams at the tournament in Russian Federation.

"I'm the only black coach at this World Cup, it's true", the 2002 Senegal World cup hero said.

Senegal's coach Aliou Cisse (L) and Senegal's defender Salif Sane give a press conference, on June 18, 2018 in Moscow, on the eve of the team's opening match as part of the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup football tournament. The only blemish for the Teranga Lions was that key players Idrissa Gueye and Salif Sane picked up yellow cards.

"We are going to start preparing for Japan game, but at the moment we need to rest, to recuperate".

"This victory means we enter the competition in the best possible way, but we know it will be a hard match against Japan". "But Africa is full of quality and we're on the way". I get phone calls from everywhere.

Brazilian great Pele predicted in 1977 that an African team would win the tournament by 2000 but returns have been disappointing, with only three quarter-final appearances by African teams in the event's history. "We are proud to represent them all".

A Russian cat named Achilles has found fame for correctly predicting the outcomes of matches at the ongoing World Cup in Russia.

Not even a win for Senegal in their first Group H in Moscow on Tuesday could temper an otherwise disaster-filled opening six days of the tournament for African hopes. "We will have a positive attitude in the next match".

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