Benin are reaching this level of the competition for the first time, which their captain Stephane Sessegnon, 35, believes is a source of joy and motivation for all the players.
Benin pulled off a continental shock last week when they knocked out one of the favourites of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, Morocco.
The West African national team, popularly known as Les Écureuils (The Squirrels), are now fully focused on their next game which will oppose them to Senegal in the quarterfinals on Wednesday in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.
“We never thought of getting this far when we began the journey. We are really excited and motivated by this achievement thus far,” the former PSG and Sunderland striker told www.aclsports.com.
“Now, we have to push for more. If you can win Hervé Renard’s Morocco with 10 men and hold top teams like Cameroon and Ghana to a draw, I don’t think there’s a team in the continent you should fear.
“We will play our usual game against Senegal. We are unfazed by the stars they parade. We feel no pressure. Benin have already made a good name at the tournament and that’s also an achievement.”
The Squirrels will welcome Steve Mounié from suspension but will do without key defender Abdou Adenon, who was sent-off against Morocco.
Sessegnon, who is born to an Ivorian father, says he could retire from Benin team after their campaign in Egypt.