Both Senegalese players and fans have paid tribute to Papa Bouba Diop as they qualified for the World Cup knockouts two years on from his death.
Senegal paid tribute to Diop after a 2-1 win over Ecuador, a result that secured their place in the World Cup knockout stages for the first time in 20 years. Current captain Kalidou Koulibaly wore ’19’ over his armband, the number Diop donned for the national team, and the players gathered at the end of the game to parade a banner picturing the former midfielder. The tributes didn’t end on the pitch though, with a group of fans doing their bit in the stands.
Diop played for Senegal the last time they got through the World Cup groups, scoring against defending champions France in the opening game of the 2002 tournament. That was one of 11 goals he netted for his country with the rest littered through friendlies and AFCON tournaments.
Aliou Cisse’s side will try and use the momentum from their win against Ecuador to fire them through to the quarter-finals. However, they will be without Idrissa Gueye through suspension. He’ll be a big miss, especially if they end up playing England, which is more than likely.