Senegal national team is under investigation for breaking FIFA’s press conference protocol on Monday before their 2-1 World Cup win over Ecuador.

Senegal has qualified for the round of 16 after defeating Ecuador 2-1

FIFA has opened an investigation to book Aliou Cisse’s team for breaking pre-match rules before their 2-1 World Cup victory over Ecuador that qualified them for the round of 16.

Senegal has qualified for the round of 16 for the first time since 2002 following their victory against Ecuador but landed into FIFA’s fury after breaking pre-match protocol.

Senegalese coach Aliou Cisse failed to comply with World Cup regulations before the Ecuador match after he attended a press conference without a player from his team.

Senegal coach Aliou Cisse
Aliou Cisse failed to comply with World Cup regulations

The rule dictated by FIFA is that ahead of every match at the World Cup, national teams are expected to attend the media conference in Qatar to give answers to questions from the press.

According to FIFA, these press sessions should feature the country’s head coach and a player, often the captain.

However, ahead of Senegal’s group match against Ecuador, which they won 2-1 thanks to goals from Ismaila Sarr and Kalidou Koulibaly, the African Champions were only represented by their coach Aliou Cisse.

Meanwhile, before the Teranga Lions’ first two matches, Senegal manager Cisse went to the press conferences with two of his players, Krepin Diatta and Kalidou Koulibaly respectively.

But ahead of the crucial match against Ecuador, he defied Fifa’s regulations by coming alone.

However, Fifa subsequently confirmed on Wednesday, November 30 via an official statement that they will investigate the matter.

The official statement from FIFA read: “The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has opened proceedings against the Senegalese Football Federation due to the potential breaches of article 44 of the Regulations for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, article 2.7.2 of the Media and Marketing Regulations and article 8.5.3 of the Team Handbook.

“The potential breaches relate to the mandatory press conference that took place on 28 November ahead of Ecuador v. Senegal FIFA World Cup™ match.”

Meanwhile, Germany received an £8,800 penalty for the same offense before their draw against Spain.

Germany coach Hansi Flick breached press conference protocol

The German head coach Hansi Flick said he did not come with any of his players to the press conference because his squad is based in the north of Qatar.

As envisaged, it is expected that Fifa’s investigation will not see Senegal kicked out of the World Cup tournament but they are likely to be fined the same £8,800 Germany got.

What’s Next for Senegal?

The Teranga Lions will face the Three Lions in the round of 16 knockout phases after England finished as Group B toppers on Tuesday, November 29, following a comfortable 3-0 win against Wales.

The round of 16 clash between Senegal and Gareth Southgate’s England team is scheduled to kick-off at 20;00 on Sunday, December 4.

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