Home Sport Women’s Afcon: What you need to know about Senegal’s Teranga Lionesses

Women’s Afcon: What you need to know about Senegal’s Teranga Lionesses

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The Teranga lionesses pulled off a smashing start on their qualification race, dominating Liberia in the first round in October.

The national women's team of Senegal last appeared 10 years ago at the CAF Women's Africa Cup of Nations
The national women’s team of Senegal last appeared 10 years ago at the CAF Women’s Africa Cup of Nations. Picture: Confederation of African Football

Team profile: Senegal

Nickname: Teranga Lionesses

Fifa Ranking: 89

How they qualified

The Teranga lionesses pulled off a smashing start on their qualification race, dominating Liberia in the first round in October. They continued in that vein, upsetting 2018 semi-finalists Mali to seal their return to the women’s showpiece.

First Round: Liberia 1-2 Senegal (0-6)

Second Round: Senegal 1-0 Mali (0-1) (3-2 APK)

Preparations

The Senegalese side began their preparations on April 25 with a group of 30 players from the domestic league, including Dieynaba Ndaw, who plays for Duke University in the United States of America. This training camp was held at the Youssoupha Ndiaye Centre of Technical Excellence in Guerrero.

Coach: Mame Moussa Cisse

After a botched 2016 attempt, Cisse finally proved his mettle in Senegalese football in his second stint since February 2020, guiding to the Lionesses to end a decade long wait for the nation’s return to the continent.

Following shock elimination of Liberia and Mali during the qualifiers, Cisse will be aiming to go all the way and surpass their previous group stage winless campaign.

Key players

Safietou Sagna

The Lionesses captain trained at Casa Sports before suiting up for Lycee Ameth Fall of US Parcelles Assainies. She later joined French side Bourges last summer. The midfielder will be a great addition to the squad through her experience, having featured in the 2012 edition.

Awa Diakhate

The Lionesses playmaker starred for AS Dakar Sacre Coeur in the maiden TotalEnergies CAF Women’s Champions League, WAFU-A qualifiers in Cape Verde. Her excellent form earned her a contract abroad with French side Bourges.

During the Women’s Afcon qualifiers, she made her mark, scoring twice – a goal in each of the two legs against Liberia and her fine form in front of goal plus exposure to European football will benefit Senegal.

Nguenar Ndiaye

One of the exceptional talents in the Lionesses’ ranks during the qualifying series as she contributed four goals, including a hat-trick against Liberia and the shock match-winner against Mali in Thies to ensure the return to the continent.

The forward is also one of the Senegalese trio snapped up by Bourges along with Diakhate and Sagna.

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