Senegal made an impressive start to the 2019 WAFU Cup of Nations with a 3-1 win over Guinea-Bissau in the tournament's opening match at the Stade Lat-Dior on Saturday.
It was a dream start for the home team with a mistake in the Guinea-Bissau defence in the 10th minute gifting the ball to Djibril Gueye who proceeded to round the keeper before seeing his initial shot cleared off the line, but he pounced on the loose ball to make it 1-0.
Eight minutes later Senegal should have doubled their lead when Ibrahima Drame met a right-wing cross from Elhadji Moutarou Balde, but the his 10-yard header went inches over the target.
On the half hour mark the Lions of Teranga scored their second goal when some beautiful wing-play down the right saw Balde square for Assane Mbodji who tucked the ball home from a couple of yards out.
Guinea-Bissau looked bewildered and made an early substitution in the 34th minute with Claudio Gomes replacing Aliou Cassama.
Gomes made an immediate impact as he showed tremendous skill to beat two Senegalese defenders on his way into the box before calmly tapping the ball past the keeper to make it 2-1.
Senegal had an opportunity to restore their two-goal cushion two minutes before the break when the Guinea-Bissau keeper spilled a cross straight into the path of Youssouph Mamadou Badji, but the striker could only find the post with his shot from a few yards out.
Guinea-Bissau made a stronger start to the second half and almost drew level in the 59th minute when the Senegalese keeper fumbled a harmless long-range shot into the path of Tigana Quebe, but the striker fired over.
Senegal took control of the game after that and had most of the possession but struggled to fashion many decent scoring chances.
Nonetheless, the home team pushed forward and put the result beyond doubt in the 86th minute when Abdoulaye Ba walked the ball into the net after concluding some swift build-up play to hand Senegal a 3-1 win.
Senegal will now progress into the quarterfinals of the Cup competition where they will play the winner of the match between Guinea and Benin on Oct. 3, while Guinea-BIssau will take part in the Plate quarterfinals and play the loser.