Senegal vs Algeria
Cairo International Stadium, Cairo
Friday, 19-07-2019 @10pm
Referee: Neant Alioum (Cameroon)
After close to a month filled with breathtaking action, the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2019 will climax on Friday night when Algeria and Senegal clash at the Cairo International Stadium.
The Two nations have arguably been the best side at the competition, treating us to thrilling displays match in and out.
Group C was their home in the first round with Algeria topping it after winning all of their games while Senegal finished three points behind the Desert Foxes.
When they met in the group, Algeria defeated Senegal 1-0 with Youcef Belaili scoring the only goal of the game.
At the round of 16, Algeria defeated Guinea 3-1, went on to eliminate Ivory Coast via penalties before edging Nigeria 2-1 in the semis.
For Senegal, the beat Uganda 1-0 in the round of 16, defeated 1-0 before eliminating Tunisia by the same score line in the semis.
Both teams have superstars but concentration will be on who among Sadio Mane and Riyad Mahrez outshines the other.
What they are saying ahead of the game
Aliou Cisse, Senegal head coach
“There is a pride at getting to the final. It had been 17 years since we got this far, since my generation in 2002,” Cisse said.
“Our philosophy is to take a game at a time and try to play the best football to erase the disappointment of 2002. It’s a dream to win the title not only for me, but for all the Senegalese people. We are close to realising this dream that we could not achieve in 2002.”
Djamel Belmadi, Algeria
“Cisse is a very good friend of me and facing him is going to be interesting. The difference between us is that he is working with Senegal since 4 years, I have barely been here for a year. He is a very good coach and doing a great job with Senegal.”
“We are facing an opponent who always wants to win the cup, so it’s going to be a very tough game.
Senegal will be without key centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly for the final. The Napoli defender picked up a second yellow card in three matches during the semi-final and he will now serve a suspension.
Aside from this, both sides should have fully fit squads to choose from.
The two nations have faced off 8 times since 2000 with Algeria winning four of those encounters while Senegal have triumphed just twice.
In the period, they have faced off only twice at AFCON with Algeria winning once and the other ending in a 2-2 draw.
Algeria have outscored every team in the tournament so far.
Senegal have won four straight games since losing to Algeria in the groups.
The Lions of Teranga ahve also kept five clean sheets in their six AFCON 2019 games.
Algeria have won the tournament on one occasion, back in 1990 while Senegal have never won the continental showpiece.