Namibia/Senegal: Lions Maul Warriors

The Brave Warriors still believe they can do a number on Senegal's Teranga Lions, despite losing Saturday's Fifa World Cup qualifier 4-1 in Thies.

Led by superstar Sadio Mane, the hosts were ruthless on their home patch, tearing the Brave Warriors to shreds during 90 pulsating minutes of action.

The unplayable Liverpool forward scored one goal and created two others as Senegal took another step towards reaching the final qualification phase.

Senegal have nine points from three matches, with the Brave Warriors remaining in second place five points back despite the defeat. Congo, who have two points, drew 1-1 at Togo (one point) on Saturday.

The scoreline is not an accurate reflection of proceedings in Thies, defiant Brave Warriors coach Bobby Samaria said.

"The tie is not over yet. We could have ended 4-3, because we had our chances too in this game. Football is about the passion we have for the game and it's all about that passion that drives us to fight," Samaria said in his post match debriefing.

The Brave Warriors will look to make amends when they host the return leg in Johannesburg tomorrow.

A win for Senegal would see them guarantee the top spot and secure qualification for the final playoff round in March next year.

An unlikely upset will keep the group alive going into the final two rounds next month.

"We started off very sluggishly and we allowed them to score two goals in the first half. They are tactically gifted and they dominated down their left and we took some time to settle in with a few corrections for the second half," said Samaria.

Idrissa Gueye opened the scoring as early as the 10th minute when he steered a shot beyond the right hand of Namibia goalkeeper Virgil Vries, following menacing work from Mane.

Famara Diedhiou headed in the second in the 39th minute, before Mane made it 3-0 with a fine solo strike which saw him slip past a couple of defenders before firing home a low, left-footed shot from the edge of the box.

The Brave Warriors pulled a goal back in the 77th minute through substitute Joslin Kamatuka after Chelsea stopper Edouard Mendy failed to deal with a rasping long range drive from Wily Stephanus.

The West African heavyweights put the game to six minutes from the end when substitute Keita Balde found the back of the net, snuffing out any hopes of an unlikely comeback from the visitors.

Nonetheless Samaria took solace from the team's second half performance.

"Although we continued to make mistakes, we showed progress with our speed with Deon Hotto, Peter Shalulile and Willy Stephanus, who came on and upped our game. We also need to be more physical in the second match," said Samaria.

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