The Senegal coach, Aliou Cissé, confessed that he did not expect to concede three goals against England this Sunday in the round of 16 but he was “satisfied” with the World Cup for his team, despite the significant loss of Sadio Mané, and with the improvement who continues to experience African football.

“Our first 30 minutes were good but we couldn’t convert. We worked for years to get here, but England is fifth in the FIFA ranking and you saw the difference,” he said after his team’s farewell.

The coach of the Leones de la Teranga, who led Senegal to the 2002 World Cup quarterfinals, confessed the superiority of the English and the weight of their goals. “We must admit the superiority of England, they pushed us back. Their second goal weighs on us. But it is above all the third that takes us out of the game. My team did not give up despite everything,” he said.

“Our strength has always been the defensive base. We have conceded many goals, we have also scored, but in general our defense allows us to make a difference,” he explained, before referring to the absence of the second best player in the world.

“Inevitably, we miss him, a player of this caliber. But the team and the team were good. I’m satisfied with our four games,” he said about the absence of a Mané who was injured just over 10 days after the World Cup.

In addition, Cissé highlighted that African football continues to grow. “African football is improving, with infrastructures, state policies, we are going to improve. There is a will to train coaches, referees, not rely on a spontaneous generation. We must not be discouraged,” he concluded.