Senegal's Aliou Cisse Denies Afcon Favourites Tag
As the 2017 CAF Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers were just finalised, Senegal coach Aliou Cisse says they are not favourites to win the tournament in Gabon next year.
The Lions of Teranga reached the tournament in Gabon after collecting 18 points, thus winning all their group matches in their campaign.
Nevertheless, the ex-Senegalese international remained humble, saying that the points in the qualifiers cannot make the team favourites.
“It is true that to collect 18 points out of 18 was something exceptional. This generation of players have written a page of history for Senegal football,” Cisse told French radio.
“But that alone cannot make Senegal one of the favourites. Senegal has not made it past the group phase in the last two Nations Cups in which they have participated in 2012 and 2015.
"That means we cannot be seen as a favourite. There are many others who are better than us, like Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Algeria.
"Maybe Senegal should be seen as a true outsider for the next Nations Cup.
“On paper, Senegal has a good group and good players. But there are several other components that come into consideration.
"I also think that when we take a little more seriously our opponents, Senegal will return to what it was.”
The Senegalese are set to continue with their dominance as they get ready to start their road to Russia in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers.
They are in Group D with South Africa, Cape Verde and Burkina Faso.