Mane out for 'first games' at World Cup, says Senegal

Senegal forward Sadio Mane will miss his team's ``first games'' at the World Cup because of a leg injury, a Senegal soccer federation board member said Tuesday.

AP , Tuesday 15 Nov 2022,
Senegal s forward Sadio Mane runs with the ball during the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2021 final fo
Senegal s forward Sadio Mane runs with the ball during the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2021 final football match between Senegal and Egypt at Stade d Olembe in Yaounde. - Sadio Man is on Senegal s list for the 2022 World Cup announced on November 11, 2022 in Dakar by coach Aliou Ciss , despite the recent injury which compromises his chances of playing. AFP


Abdoulaye Sow said Senegal will have to cope without its best player for the start of the tournament and ``not whine too much.``

``We will have to rely on playing the first games without Sadio and win without Sadio because we have 25 players apart from Sadio,`` Sow said. ``No one would have wanted it, but that's what's happened to us.''

Sow didn't specify how many games Mane is expected to miss, and there has been no official word from Senegal or Bayern Munich.

Mane was injured a week ago in a German league game between Bayern and Werder Bremen. He was substituted in the 20th minute of Bayern's 6-1 win. Bayern said the two-time African player of the year has an injury to the head of the fibula bone in his lower right leg.

Most of Senegal's squad arrived in Qatar for the World Cup on Sunday without Mane. The team's first game in Qatar against the Netherlands is on Monday but Mane was still waiting for more tests by the Bayern medical team.

Senegal, the reigning African champion, plays host Qatar four days after it faces the Netherlands. Its final game in Group A is against Ecuador on Nov. 29.

Mane was named in Senegal's 26-man World Cup squad last week by coach Aliou Cisse, who said at the time that Senegal was hopeful Mane might still be ready for the start of the tournament. But Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann had cast doubt Friday on Mane's participation when he said the player would be sidelined for at least another 10 days even before follow-up tests to determine the precise extent of the injury.

``It's obvious that Senegal would like him to play,`` Nagelsmann said. ``But if he's in pain, he can't play. The medical things are more important than the sporting ones. That's the case with us and also with everyone else.''

Senegal won its first major title at the African Cup in February, when Mane scored the winning penalty in a shootout to beat Egypt in the final. Mane also scored the winning penalty in a playoff that sealed a place for Senegal in Qatar.

Senegal _ with Mane _ is rated by many as the best African side to ever go to a World Cup.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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