X
Follow The Sportsman on Facebook
Football  /

Senegal 2-1 Poland: 4 Things We Learned As Mane's Men Bested Lewandowski's

Lewandowski toils to no avail
Lewandowski toils to no avail

Senegal earned their first World Cup points since 2002 with a 2-1 victory over Poland on Tuesday afternoon.

Below are four talking points from the Otkrytie Arena in Moscow.

1. Cisse’s bold system pays off

Aliou Cisse has fielded criticism for being too conservative back in Senegal, but that cannot be levelled at him after his approach to this match. The former midfielder set his side up in a 4-4-2 formation here, with M’Baye Niang joining Mame Biram Diouf up front, and forwards Sadio Mane and Ismaila Sarr selected on the flanks. The inclusion of all four attackers was perhaps recognition of the fact Senegal often struggle for midfield creativity, and it paid off with a huge opening-game victory.

Senegal were not at their best in the first half, but it was they who did most of the running and looked to make things happen. Their opening goal was heavily deflected and their second was down to a major error from Grzegorz Krychowiak, but Senegal still deserved their win.

2. One-paced Poland lack ideas and imagination

Poland will lament the misfortune of Thiago Cionek’s own goal, but they only had themselves to blame for losing this match. Adam Nawalka’s side looked short of ideas and imagination throughout, barely fashioning any chances of note from open play and relying on an admittedly wonderful header from a set-piece to get on the scoresheet.

Napoli midfielder Piotr Zielinski was the man who looked to provide some sort of spark and invention, but even at 2-0 down Poland were far too pedestrian with their passing. They will have to play much better than this if they are to make it out of the group.

3. Lewandowski anonymous up front

Robert Lewandowski is Poland’s star man and chief goal-getter, with the Bayern Munich man finding the net 16 times in his country’s 10 qualifiers. He was hardly involved against Senegal, however, taking just two shots all game – and one of those was from a direct free-kick attempt. An even more concerning statistic is the fact he and second striker Arek Milik only exchanged a single pass before the latter was substituted in the 73rd minute.

Lewandowski is one of the most lethal centre-forwards around in and around the penalty area, but he did not receive the requisite service here. Poland must get more out of their main man against Colombia on Sunday.

4. Senegal take control of Group G

With Poland the top seeds in Group G, theirs was always likely to be the most open section of the first round. We have had to wait a few days for the eighth segment to get underway, but Tuesday’s encounter only served to heighten the sense that this is the most intriguing group of the World Cup.

Senegal and Japan occupy the top two spots ahead of the next instalment of games, with Colombia and Poland now forced to do the chasing. There is still plenty to play for but the Lions of Teranga will be delighted with their start, with one win from their next two matches likely to be enough for them to progress to the round of 16.

Register with The Sportsman to personalise your news feed with your favourite sports and team.
Latest Football Articles
Bet Slip
Log In
Open
Settled
Deposit
Quick Deposit
Deposit
CV2
Deposit Funds
Change Payment Method
Bet Placed
Retain Selections
Clear Slip
Bet Slip 0
| Join Now
Balance: £0.00
Refresh
Log Out
The line, odds or availability of your selections has changed.
Remove All
Singles
Click a price to add a selection
Multiples
To view multiples
Multiple options are restricted for the highlighted selections
The line, odds or availability of your selections has changed.
Accept Changes
Total Stake:
£ 0.00

Estimated Returns:
£ 0.00
£ Place Bet
Bet on Bet365 website
New To Bet365?

Bore Draw Money Back

Refund for any football game that finishes 0-0 on all First/Last/Anytime Goalscorer, Correct Score, Half-Time/Full-Time or Scorecast bets. Only available to new and eligible customers. Bet restrictions and T&Cs apply. 18+. BeGambleAware.org.

T&C's Apply 18+

CLAIM HERE
Bore Draw Money Back

Refund for any football game that finishes 0-0 on all First/Last/Anytime Goalscorer, Correct Score, Half-Time/Full-Time or Scorecast bets. Only available to new and eligible customers. Bet restrictions and T&Cs apply. 18+. BeGambleAware.org.


Up to £100 in bet credits

Open Account Offer

Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365. Min deposit £5 and 1x settled bet requirement to release Bet Credits. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply.


BET HERE
Up to £100 in bet credits

Open Account Offer

Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365. Min deposit £5 and 1x settled bet requirement to release Bet Credits. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply.

Bets are accepted in accordance with the operator's rules
and terms and conditions. Hillside (UK Sports) LP is licensed
and regulated by the British Gambling Commissioner
(Licence number 39563). Registered Office Hillside (UK Sports) LP
(registration number 117), Unit 1.1, First Floor, Waterport Place,
2 Europort Avenue, Gibraltar.
DON'T HAVE A
BET365 ACCOUNT? New Customer Offer
The Sportsman is an officially endorsed bet365 betting partner. All bets are placed securely via our API link-up with bet365 and no data or transactional information is sahred with or accessible by the sportsman.com. Bets are accepted in accordance with the operator's Rules and Terms and Conditions.