BY KUNLE SOLAJA.
Senegal may be the current highest ranked African side in the monthly FIFA ranking. But when the team face Nigeria in London on Thursday, it will only be attempting to bridge the gulf in the head-to-head clash with the Super Eagles.
The encounter at The Hive will be the 21st between the two sides and Nigeria have an edge in the previous 20 encounters which date back to 1963.
Of the 20 past clashes, Nigeria had won nine and will be gunning for a tenth which will ultimately impact on the side’s rating when the next FIFA ranking is released on April 6.
Senegal had beaten Nigeria only six times in 20 encounters while five of the matches were drawn. The last time both sides met was the losers’ final match at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.
Even though score lines were often very close, some matches produced staggering goals. When both first met in Ghana at the just initiated Kwame Nkrumah Cup in 2006, Nigeria beat Senegal 4-0.
Senegal responded two months later in Dakar at the Friendship Games which ignited the All Africa Games two years later.
Senegal won the match 5-1 and it remained the most goal-laden encounter of the two sides till date.
NIGERIA –SENEGAL: Head-to-Head
P W D L F A
NIGERIA 20 9 5 6 26 22
SENEGAL 20 6 5 9 22 26
- 27Feb1963 (Nkrumah Cup) Senegal 0-4 Nigeria
- 14 Apr. 1963 (Friendship Games) Senegal 5-1 Nigeria
- 3 April 1971 (OQ.) Nigeria 1-1 Senegal
- 18 April 1971 (OQ.) Senegal 2-1 Nigeria
- 2 Feb. 1975 (F) Senegal 0-1Nigeria
- 22 Feb. 1975 (F) Nigeria 1-1 Senegal
- 25 April 1975 (F) Senegal 1-0 Nigeria
- 12 Jun1977 (Afcon q) Senegal 3-1 Nigeria
- 25 Jun.1977 (Afcon q) Nigeria 3-0 Senegal
- 5 Nov. 1983 (Wafu q) Nigeria 1-0 Senegal
- 1983 (Wafu q) Senegal 0-1 Nigeria
- 28 Jan.1990 (Ecowas) Nigeria 0-0 Senegal
- 12 Jan.1992 (Afcon) Senegal 1-2 Nigeria
- 28 Feb.1999 (Afcon q) Senegal 1-1 Nigeria
- 7 Feb. 2000. (Afcon ) Nigeria 2-1 Senegal.
- 7 Feb. 2002 (Afcon) Senegal 2-1 Nigeria
- 12 Oct. 2002 (F) Senegal 2-2 Nigeria
- 2004 (LGCup) Nigeria 0-1 Senegal
- 31 Jan 2006 (Afcon) Senegal 1-2 Nigeria
- 9 Feb.2006 (Afcon) Senegal 0-1 Nigeria