Ecuador and Senegal will meet in a crucial match at the 2022 World Cup on Tuesday, with both sides looking to secure progress through to the knockout stages from Group A.
It is advantage Ecuador heading into the contest, as they sit level with the Netherlands at the top of the standings on four points, one clear of Senegal in third, while hosts Qatar have already been eliminated from the competition after losing their opening two fixtures.
With the Dutch expected to beat Qatar in Tuesday’s other Group A match, thus securing their place in the last 16, all the attention is likely to be on the Khalifa International Stadium where a point will be enough to take Ecuador through, while Senegal know only a win will realistically do.
Ecuador vs Senegal Betting Tips
Ecuador are sweating over the fitness of their captain and talisman Enner Valencia after he was stretchered off late in Friday’s 1-1 draw with the Netherlands.
Valencia’s importance to La Tri cannot be underestimated, as he is his country’s all-time record scorer and has netted each of their last six goals at the Word Cup finals, including all three of their strikes in Qatar.
Kevin Rodriguez and Jeremy Sarmiento are among the contenders to replace Valencia, who is confident of being available, and head coach Gustavo Alfaro will be desperate to have his star man fit, especially as Ecuador will already be without midfielder Jhegson Mendez, who is suspended after picking up his second yellow card of the tournament against the Dutch.
Senegal have no such selection concerns and the three goals they scored against Qatar underlined that the Lions of Teranga can cope in the absence of injured forward Sadio Mane.
Bamba Dieng came off the bench to score against the hosts and he will be hoping he has done enough to earn a place in Aliou Cisse’s starting XI.
Senegal to win @ 11/5
If Ecuador do have to go into Tuesday’s game without Valencia then it will seriously diminish their hopes of getting the point they need to advance to the knockout stages.
The fact a draw will be enough for the South Americans may also complicate matters when it comes to how Alfaro sets his team up.
The equation for Senegal is a lot more simple, as they must realistically go all out for the victory and they will fancy their chances against a potentially depleted Ecuador line-up.
Senegal won the only previous meeting between these two sides – a 1-0 friendly success in 2002 – which is also the same year the Africans last reached the knockout stages of the World Cup, is that a potential good omen?
#PickYourPunt – Moises Caicedo to be carded @ 10/3
The absence of Mendez in midfield will also be a blow for Ecuador and will place greater emphasis on Brighton midfielder Moises Caicedo to provide protection in front of his defence.
That will also up the likelihood of the 21-year-old picking up a yellow card and he is certainly no stranger to referees, as he has been booked four times in the Premier League to date this season, while he was also cautioned in Ecuador’s World Cup opener against Qatar.
Caicedo to be carded is available at 10/3 using Betfred’s #PickYourPunt and could well be worth considering.
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