Senegal boss Aliou Cisse has insisted Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy still remains his No.1 goalkeeper despite his errors in Senegal’s 2-0 defeat to Netherlands.
Mendy was heavily criticised for his role in both goals Senegal conceded against Netherlands with reports from Senegal claiming the goalkeeper could be dropped to the bench.
“Edouard doing very well, he has a steel resolve,” said Cisse.
“We chatted about the game. Edouard’s qualities speak for himself. He has had highs and lows but he has my blind trust. He will be on the pitch.”
Mendy’s Chelsea teammate Kalidou Koulibaly also backed his friend, who was the penalty shootout hero of Senegal’s African Cup of Nations triumph in February.
“We play at the same club, we are brothers in arms for Senegal and we speak a lot together,” said Koulibaly. “He’s a very important player for us and it’s totally normal to go through difficult phases.
“I think we are making a mountain out of a molehill. When a team loses, it’s not down to one player, it’s all of us, so we shouldn’t be making such a big deal about it. Edouard knows what he has to do and so do we – and we need everyone to get stuck in.
“It won’t be easy. We started with a loss and we do have our backs against the wall but we are the lions and we will try for six points out of six. Our mentality will be like that of warriors.”