Aliou Cisse Defends 'Committed' Senegal After 2018 FIFA World Cup Exit

Thibaut Courtois

Thibaut Courtois

At the time, Senegal was losing 1-0 to Colombia, which jumped from third spot to top of the group.

The Samurai Blue may count themselves lucky to still be in the tournament after a 1-0 defeat by already-eliminated Poland.

Senegal were eliminated. It was the first time in World Cup history that two teams had been separated by the number of yellow cards they had accrued in the tournament. Colombia won the group with six points from three games. A direct red card would cost four points.

Pekerman's side were largely second best for much of their match against Senegal and had to play 60 minutes without talisman James Rodriguez, who was substituted in the first half with an injury.

"There is a level of performance on the pitch that cannot not be derailed by poor officiting; how can one explain that Nigeria, for instance, tookik a team of rookies to the World Cup and expect to excel", she said.

Click through the gallery above to see some images of Senegal's 1-0 loss to Colombia on Thursday!

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"I chose to keep the status quo in our game, and rely instead on the other result. But I can say it's not a comfortable situation for us". It was not intentional.

Japan coach Akira Nishino said "it was a very tough decision" to adopt the tactics, while the end to the match was described by commentators as "embarrassing" and "an absolute farce".

Cisse said it was "sad" and a "shame" for Senegal to go out in such a way, and conceded that maybe his players had been too committed in their tackling.

After the game, Pekerman told reporters he was anxious about the condition of the 26-year-old, who spent last season on loan at Bayern Munich from Real Madrid, while also attempting to play down the situation given Colombia's qualification for the last 16.

While the fair play tiebreaker is far from flawless, it's likely better than what would have been the case had Senegal and Japan also been tied on yellow cards - the final remaining tiebreaker that Federation Internationale de Football Association has, in that case, is the drawing of lots.

"Instead of uniting to fight a common cause for Africa in worldwide competitions, they only feed fat on estacodes and thrive on the Anglo and Franco-phone dichotomy", he said.