Senegal got away with it.
But it was complicated.
Opposed this Tuesday afternoon to Cape Verde in the round of 16 of the CAN, Aliou Cissé's men won laboriously (2-0) and will therefore see the quarter-finals of the tournament.
It took two opposing expulsions, the first on a delayed sole from Andrade (21st), the second on a hazardous exit from goalkeeper Vozinha (57th), totally stunned, for differences to finally be made. Until now, boredom prevailed in Bafoussam. Unable to crack the Cape Verdean block, the Senegalese disappointed for an hour of play. No matter how much Sadio Mané struggled on his left wing, he was too alone. The deliverance came from the right leg of the Liverpool star, five minutes after the second red card. The striker recovered a ball from a corner kick and then wrapped it perfectly under the bar.
A bit like the Comorians the night before against Cameroon (2-1), the Cape Verdeans showed great resistance.
Former Dijonnais Julio Tavares will long regret this heel in the 85th minute, which could have been synonymous with an incredible equalizer.
A few minutes later, the Marseillais Bamba Dieng put an end to the suspense.
Three goals in four games, including two from Mané
The Teranga Lions will need more consistency and offensive creativity on Sunday evening in Douala in the next round.
This time they will be opposed to Mali or Equatorial Guinea, who face each other on Wednesday afternoon.
Parisians Abdou Diallo and Gana Gueye were starters.
And they too will have to raise their level of play so that the danger is no longer due solely to Sadio Mané but indeed to a collective capable of aiming for the title, after the traumatic final lost in 2019 against Algeria.
Senegal have only scored three goals in this competition.
The first, during the first pool match, on a penalty from Mané in added time against Zimbabwe.
And therefore two in the eighth, with two players more than the opponent on the lawn.