Coach Saintfiet expresses happiness after victory over Gabon in Banjul

Nov 19, 2020, 11:55 AM | Article By: Arfang M.S. Camara

Scorpions’ coach Tom Saintfiet has said that despite the challenges faced by his team, he was very happy and proud of his players after they defeated Gabon 2-1 in their return leg of the Afcon Group D qualifiers played at the Independence Stadium in Banjul on Monday.

South Korea’s Jeaonbuk Hyundai Motors attacker, Modou Barrow opened the scores for The Gambia when he capitalised on Gabonese goalkeeper Mfa Anthony’s blunder in the 49th minute of the second half to make it 1-0.

Italia Serie A and Bologna’s striker Musa Barrow double the score line in the 79th minutes to make it 2-0, after a brilliant assist from UAE-based Steve Bubacarr Trawally.

Gabon pulled a goal back in the 89th minute with Bruno Ecuele Manga’s powerfully headed a free-kick from Denis Bounga. At the end of the game, it was the Scorpions of The Gambia 2 and the Panthers of Gabon 1.

Despite the too many challenges we still had a good group of players and we showed that during the match. Today, we were in control in the first half even without creating a lot of chance apart from the one from Ablie Jallow. In the second half we came out with more fire and scored two very good goals from the two Barrows which is very important for the boys,” said the Gambian boss.

He added that The Gambian side has a lot of talents but are not just lucky, noting that sometimes it is also good to get that boost.

I’m very happy for these boys and very proud that they scored these goals. Naturally we wanted to win two nil because later in the qualification, it could be very important if we end with the same points with Gabon. At the moment our (Scorpions) team lead the group due to goal difference. But naturally, if they score more goals than us in their last game against Angola then it could be a problem”.

The Belgian tactician further said that he is very proud for his side while pointing out the difficult circumstances that preceded the match.

We got tested four times in the last 10 days and we are not scared to be tested anywhere. We did as well irrespective the CAF rules. We get tested in our home country. We got twice tested in Gabon and Sulayman Marreh, though not sick but positive with no symptoms is still sitting in Gabon.”

The Gambia has now reclaimed top spot in Group D of the Afcon qualifiers with 7 points after the win, levelling with Gabon but superior in goal differences.

The Scorpions will in March 2021 play against Angola in Banjul, while Gabon plays DR Congo.