Senegal vs Netherlands Prediction

21 November 2022, 19:00 Qatar Time/16:00 GMT
Al Thumama Stadium, Doha

Current Form (Last Five Matches):



1-1 (N)


2-0 (N)


1-1p (N)


4-3 (N)


1-1p (N)








1-0 (H)


2-0 (A)


3-2 (H)


2-2 (H)


2-1 (A)






World Cup Head to Head



Senegal vs Netherlands Prediction Match Overview


On the tournament’s second day, African champions Senegal face UEFA Nations League Finalists the Netherlands in the second game of Group A in Doha. These teams are generally considered the two favourites in this group, so both will look to get off to a good start. It is a 7 pm kick-off time locally, so there should be a good atmosphere.

Senegal come into the match in good form, having won three of their previous five games. They will hope to continue this form in Qatar. They are ranked 18th in the world.

Eighth-ranked Netherlands are in excellent shape, having won four of their last five games (all UEFA Nations League matches), scoring ten goals. They enter the tournament with some confidence.



Senegal: Star player Sadio Mane is out of the first match with injury. Abdou Diallo is doubtful.

Netherlands: Memphis Depay is not fit enough to start but may come on in the second half. Martin de Roon is questionable. There are also doubts over Denzel Dumfries and Nathan Ake, but we think they will both start.

Possible Lineups

Senegal vs Netherlands Prediction Analysis


The Senegalese are likely to line up with a 4-3-3, though their star player Sadio Mane is out. We think Iliman Ndiaye will replace him. The Dutch will likely play three at the back in a 3-4-1-2. Senegal will use the width of their full-backs, Fode Ballo-Toure and Youssouf Sabaly, to try to get forward and hurt the Dutch. They will be required to support Ndiaye wide left and Ismaila Sarr wide right. As the Netherlands play with three at the back, there may well be space behind the wing-backs, Daley Blind and Denzel Dumfries. Dumfries especially is very attacking and marauding, and Ndiaye will be looking at this area to find pockets of space to potentially exploit, with Ballo-Toure supporting on the overlap. Boulaye Dia, in attack, will try to head the ball from crosses. Dia is also very quick and a quality finisher, so the Dutch must beware of his threat, especially on transitions.

However, Frenkie De Jong and Davy Klaassen are both very good at covering spaces and ensuring there are no gaps for the opposition to exploit. Their and Steven Berghuis’s battle with Cheikhou Kouyate, Idrissa Gueye, and Nampalys Mendy will be intriguing. De Jong is clearly the most elegant midfielder on display here and is very press-resistant. He will look to take the ball from the Dutch back three and try to initiate attacks by playing through the lines. However, pressure on him will likely come in various forms, from the high-pressing and energetic Senegalese midfield three to Sarr and Ndiaye in wide areas. They can catch the Dutch out in their defensive third. If this happens, the Dutch back three will be ready. Jurrien Timber, Nathan Ake, and Rolls-Royce-style defender Virgil Van Dijk can all snuff out a quick attack when Senegal win the ball high. All three can also play out from the back, with Van Dijk and Ake particularly good on the ball.

The wide battle is crucial in this match. Dumfries will look to get forward at every opportunity, knowing the insurance he has from de Jong and Klaassen offers protection against Ndiaye. Blind is also excellent on the ball on the Dutch left side but will likely be more conservative than Dumfries. He is older, has far less pace, and will want to avoid being caught upfield and out of position against the pacey Sarr. If the Dutch can get the ball into the exciting Cody Gakpo and Steven Bergwijn, the forwards will look to go past the Senegal defenders with their pace and trickery to shoot. Edouard Mendy, in goal, is a good shot-stopper and good at coming for crosses in case the Netherlands bring on one of their target men as plan B. Kalidou Koulibaly will lead the Senegalese defence. He and Pape Abou Cisse (who may be alongside him, though Abdou Diallo is also an option) will have to be wary of the Dutch pace, technique, and creativity, especially from Berghuis in the hole. They are both powerful centre-backs, so they shouldn’t have too much of a problem in terms of physicality. However, Wout Weghorst or Vincent Janssen being brought into the game would present more problems in this respect.

There are options for both teams to change things. Pape Matar Sarr can come in and refresh and reinforce the midfield area for Senegal. They also have Bamba Dieng and Nicolas Jackson as young talented options to come on in attack. Jackson is very creative, whereas Dieng can score goals. Famara Diedhiou is a more experienced alternative to Dia. The Netherlands, for their part, can also play Stefan de Vrij or Matthijs de Ligt in defence. Xavi Simons and Kenneth Taylor are elegant potential midfield replacements. Further forward, Memphis Depay may be fit enough to come on in the second half to try to create with his passing and dribbling and try to score, as Senegal tire. As stated, if the Dutch want to go long, they can bring on Weghorst or Janssen.

Senegal Key Players

Idrissa Gana Gueye

Gueye is a bustling and industrious midfielder. He is good on the ball and can pass well, but his strength lies in his physicality, energy, and ability to break down play. He is also a strong tackler and adept at winning the ball with challenges and interceptions. He will seek to link up with Kouyate and Nampalys Mendy and press in midfield to catch the possession-orientated Dutch out. Gueye being somewhat of a yellow card magnet is something the Netherlands will look to exploit. Indeed, don’t be surprised to see him carded in this match. If Gueye and his midfield partners can win the midfield battle, it could determine the result.

Ismaïla Sarr

Sarr is a very exciting, pacey, and tricky winger. Indeed, he is a great dribbler and can shoot too. Having scored 53 goals at club level to date, Sarr also has decent scoring ability. Blind knows that he cannot be too expansive in this match, with Sarr waiting to exploit any spaces he vacates. Sarr will be predatory in the event of any Dutch mistakes, and he will look to go past Blind with his superior pace and his good close control. He will also come into contact with the Dutch midfielders and Ake and Van Dijk when he comes inside. Few players beat Van Dijk, so that will be a good test for Sarr. With Mane out, there is even more responsibility on Sarr to create something from nothing and produce a moment of magic to help Senegal win this match.

Netherlands Key Players

Denzel Dumfries

Dumfries has his limitations defensively. He also seems best used as a wing-back in a five rather than a right-back in a four. Nevertheless, as a forward-roaming player, his marauding style is a potent weapon for the Dutch. He will be asked to get forward often, using his pace and power to attack the line to put crosses in or come inside in the final third and link with the front men. At club level, he has scored 29 goals, which is respectable for a wing-back. Therefore, he is also good for the occasional goal. In a defensive sense, the Dutch midfielders will cover his runs forward. However, he must still be mindful of not leaving massive spaces for the Senegalese left-sided players to exploit. He must be an attacking threat but also responsible defensively. He cannot be too cavalier and has to demonstrate balance.

Frenkie de Jong

He has had his struggles at Barcelona, but de Jong seems to have become part of the Barca first eleven again. Indeed, he is a classy technician who is difficult to dispossess. This makes for an interesting clash of styles with Gueye, who, as stated, is more of an all-action and tenacious midfielder. It is clear that de Jong will look to control the game. He will take the ball from the Dutch back three and try to initiate attacks and find gaps between the Senegalese lines. De Jong is a superb passer, and, allied to his resistance to being pressed, he could be vital to opening Senegal up. On the defensive side, he and his midfield partner (possibly Klaassen) will have to be diligent and cover for Dumfries as he goes forward.

Senegal vs Netherlands Prediction


This match is difficult to call. The Netherlands come into the tournament in superb form, but they have weaknesses. Despite Mane being out, Senegal are the current African champions and pose a significant threat. The midfield might be key here; whichever wins the battle will give their side a platform to expose the admittedly talented defences of the opposition. We expect a tight game between two good sides. The Dutch should have more of the ball, but Senegal have a cutting edge. Therefore, we predict the result will be all square.

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