By Sulayman Bah
It was a bitter pill to swallow for Gambia’s home-based Scorpions
after getting kicked out of the CHAN by a resolute visiting Senegalese
outfit on Saturday.
The first –leg ended on a shocking 3-1 defeat for Bonu’s charges atthe Stade Demba Diop and required to overturn the result to score two
unanswered goals to breeze through the next and final qualifier
There wasn’t any confidence crisis in the team except for pressure to
deliver before Gambian supporters –who for a strong belief of a
possible qualification –had flocked into the stadium in surprising
Assisted by Matarr Mboge in the dug-out, Bonu watched presumably in
sheer awe as his charges were run through a strange cone-running
training drilljust seconds from game start when the Taranga Lions were
long done and on brink of posing for the cameras.
And despite that impromptu quick work-out drill it was gaffer
Moustapha Seck’s coalition of Lionswho that stole the headlines scoring an
early 8th minute goal that left the hosts gob-smacked.
Ablie’s well-taken cross from the right skipped past a mass of heads
in the Gambian box to a barely marked Mouhamad Waliou Ndoye who
settled well to head past a helpless Scorpions keeper Christoper
Allen. It proved the game’s only goal and one the Gambian outfit would
later pay dearly for.
Ablie Jallow reacted swiftly for Gambia but the attack stuttered when
striker Emil Sambou failed to follow-up Jallow’s through ball inside
Bully Drammeh’s leg took him past his marker and the Brikama United
skillful marks-man gambled in a cross which hReal de Banjul’s Jallow
un-inspiringly wasted with a weak header that Senegal’s net-minder
Cheikh Amadou BambaThioub scooped untroubled.
The teams went into the locker room with Senegal leading.
Fresh from break goal-provider Ablie Bah penetrated the Gambian
defence line but got barged into by goalkeeper Allen.
Gambia had the Lion’s share of the chances but the profligacy in front
of goal was quite apparent with a man striker.
It was Senegal first defeat of Gambia since 2003 when the two teams
meeting ended in controversy.