The 2022 World Cup has seen its first official elimination after hosts Qatar succumbed to a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Senegal as Aliou Cissé's Lions of Teranga bounced back from an opening group stage loss against the Netherlands.
Goals from Boulaye Dia, Famara Diédhiou, and Bamba Dieng sealed all three points for the reigning African champions despite the unfortunate absence of talismanic forward Sadio Mané and putting Senegal back in the hunt for passage into the knockout stages after Ecuador out-stripped Louis van Gaal’s Oranje in a 1-1 draw earlier this evening.
Despite Qatar being capable of celebrating the nation first ever goal at a World Cup thanks to Al-Duhail SC’s Mohammed Muntari’s 78th-minute strike, there is little left to celebrate after the hosts become the first nation to ever entertain football’s biggest tournament and be dumped out of contention after just two matches.
It is only the second time a host nation failed to emerge from group play and into the knockout stage at a World Cup, with South Africa’s efforts in 2010 falling short despite Bafana Bafana earning a 1-1 draw in Mexico and a famous 2-1 win over France before being eliminated on the back of inferior goal difference.
There will be no such last hurrah for Qatar in front of home support, however, with The Maroon put in a position to rely on either a Dutch or Ecuadorian win for them to have a fighting chance against Van Gaal’s outfit on the final day of group play.
Though many fans did not expect Qatar to reach the next phase of the tournament, some maybe have felt achieving some semblance of a points total would be possible after the nation won its first-ever Asian Cup in 2019 while also seeing off regional powerhouse duo Japan and South Korea along the way.
Read below for more from the 2022 World Cup in Qatar
Match Report | Ecuador unlucky to come away with just a point in an impressive 1-1 draw against the Netherlands
France boss Deschamps ready to drop Liverpool star for Man United counterpart
Ecuador’s Enner Valencia equals all-time World Cup record before being stretchered off vs the Netherlands