Senegal coach Aliou Cissé: AFCON 2019 final not impossible

Senegal coach Aliou Cissé: AFCON 2019 final not impossible

Senegal coach Aliou Cissé had a contract extension a day ago, with an improved pay package and higher objectives attached to it.

The former captain of the Teranga Lions, who qualified the team for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, will remain on board for the next 30 months – until August 2021.

Some of the tasks included in the new deal entail the participation of Senegal in the 2019 and 2021 AFCON as well as the 2022 World Cup.

Senegal have already qualified for the upcoming continental showpiece holding in Egypt next June, but they must fight to reach the final, according to the FA.

“Reaching the final is part of my new deal and I have to work towards it without fear. I consider it as a huge motivation and believe it is not impossible,” Cissé told ACLsports on Friday from Dakar.

“People feel it’d put unhealthy pressure on my players, like a cook asked to prepare a meal for a king. But I don’t see it that way.

“Look, the Teranga Lions are made up of true professionals. They are used to pressure. They know they would be coming against tough national teams like Nigeria, Cote D’Ivoire, Cameroon, Egypt, etc, so that is enough pressure to overcome if you want to make a continental statement,” he said.

From a monthly salary of $18,000, the lowest for a coach at the 2018 World Cup, Cissé will now take home $34,000, but he says he has never looked at money.

“The biggest salary of a coach is success on the pitch and not a fat cheque. You know why? It’s what gives him real satisfaction. You could be paid millions of dollar but if your team keeps flopping you will never be happy.”

Senegal will play their final 2019 AFCON qualification match, a dead rubber, against already qualified Madagascar on March 22.

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