Eagles in Mali crosshair

By Daily Sports on May 5, 2016

Views: 2,406

Nigeria’s clash with Mali on May 27 will be a chance for Les Aiglons coach Alain Giresse to test his evolving squad against the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations winners.

Giresse has had his side chunk up points in the Gabon 2017 race and look well on their way to another appearance at the biennial event.

Les Aiglons, coached by Frenchman Alan Giresse, have raked in 10 points from four games after 3 wins and a draw.

Mali rule Group C of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers and look all but set to hit Gabon for Africa’s Premier football event.

Giresse has got his team playing as a strong defensive unit who are also good on the counter attack. Bakary Sakho of Wolverhampton Wanderers is their main man that supplies the ammunition for the likes of Cheick Diabate to thrive on.

Mali has been aggressive in recruiting foreign-born players into their squad to beef up the team. Many French-born youngsters like Tongo Hamed Doumbia of Toulouse and Youssouf Koné who plays for OSC Lille are switching allegiance to Mali.

A big fish that through Mali’s net is Leicester City’s N’Golo Kante who turned down overtures from the West Africans in January and was recently capped by France and is a certainty to make the Les Blues squad for Euro 2016.

This recruitment drive has enabled Giresse to build a youthful side that will challenge for African honours in the not too distant feature.

Despite being a strong defensive unit, Mali surely has some great attacking options that will worry the Super Eagles when the two sides clash.

Bordeaux’s Cheick Diabate is a man mountain; your quintessential target man who has great technical skills for a big man ( he stands at 6’4).

The 28-year-old striker has scored 11 goals in all competitions for Bordeaux this season and has been one of the mainstays of Mali’s attack in the last five years.

Veteran Modibo Maiga who now plays in the Gulf is still in the squad despite not enjoying as much playing time as he does before but is an essential part of Giresse’s orchestra.

Oumar Sissoko is the man behind the sticks these days as the goalkeeper leads a French contingent that includes midfielders Amodu Traore, Yacouba Sylla and Tongo Hamed Doumbia.

Mali will be without influential midfielder Sambou Yatabare who plays in the German Bundesliga with Weder Bremen for the game against the Super Eagles.

Yatabare picked up a knock playing for his German side and has been ruled out for the rest of the season as he undergoes treatment.

Giresse will hope his mission with the Aiglons yields fruit again as he hopes to add Nigeria to his latest batch of conquests.

•Culled from Superspots.com.

Source Daily Sports

Posted May 5, 2016


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