Senegal loses first match 0-2 to Netherlands in Group A
The Netherlands kicked off their 2022 World Cup campaign with a 2-0 win over the African champions Senegal in Group A on Monday.
Eredivisie top scorer Cody Gakpo headed home in the 84th minute on his World Cup debut and Davy Klaassen struck deep into injury time to give the Oranje a crucial win.
Ecuador and Netherlands are now joint leaders in Group A after both registering 2-0 wins in their respective openers; they will face each other in their second group game on Friday.
That was also down to Netherlands goalkeeper Andries Noppert, who made three strong saves to deny the Senegalese in his first game for the national team.
Late goals by Cody Gakpo and Davy Klaassen gave the Netherlands a 2-0 victory over African champions Senegal on Monday on their return to the World Cup stage.
With Senegal missing injured star man Sadio Mane and the Dutch without their main attacking threat Memphis Depay at kick-off, the Group A encounter in Doha looked set to end in a goalless draw.
But with just six minutes remaining PSV Eindhoven forward Gakpo got up in front of Senegal goalkeeper Edouard Mendy to head in a floated Frenkie de Jong cross from the left.
Substitute Klaassen then secured the victory deep in injury time, following up to score after Mendy had saved from Depay, who had also come off the bench.
The result leaves the Netherlands level at the top of the group with Ecuador, who beat hosts Qatar 2-0 in the tournament’s opening match on Sunday.
Louis van Gaal’s side play Ecuador on Friday, while Senegal now face a must-win contest against Qatar.
Senegal saw Bayern Munich superstar Mane — who came second in this year’s Ballon d’Or — pull out of the squad with a leg injury on the eve of the tournament.