On July 10, against Benin, Senegalese Idrissa Gueye scored only his fourth goal in 68 selections. But it was probably the most important, as he opened the way for the African Cup of Nations (ACN) semi-finals to his team, a level she had not reached since 2002. The Everton English midfielder has emerged as one of the leaders of the Senegalese squad led by Aliou Cisse, the "Teranga Lions" hoping to win against Tunisia on Sunday (14 July). Cairo.
Aged 29, the player is, along with Sadio Mané, Cheik Kouyate, Kalidou Koulibaly or Lamine Gassama, the oldest of the squad. Born in Dakar, Idrissa Gueye was trained in Diambars, the famous training center located in Saly and whose name means "warrior" in Wolof. " Idrissa is a leader in the field, but also outsidesays Lamine Gassama, also international. Over the years, it has grown in importance. He is one of the best players in his job. It is also someone very important for the balance of the group. He is one of those whose voice is ", Says the defender Göztepe Izmir (Turkey).
"I became more mature, more aggressive"
Arrived in Lille in 2010, Idrissa Gueye is a young player still shy, first used with the team reserve northerner. But Rudi Garcia, then coach of LOSC, quickly calls him to play Ligue 1 games. The Senegalese seduced the technician. " I remember his duet with his countryman Pape Souaré, also trained at Diambars and arrived at Lille at the same time. They were together all the time. Idrissa is not only a well educated boy, but also a very hard worker "Says the former coach of Olympique Marseille. Idrissa Gueye is taking part in the double – championship and the Coupe de France – achieved by the LOSC in 2010-2011. He was called to the national team by Amara Traoré in November 2011, seven months before competing in the London Olympics.
His good seasons Lille lead him to England, and more specifically to Aston Villa, in June 2015, then to Everton a year later. " The fact of evolving in the English league allowed him to cross a course in all areas. He improved his game and his personality was affirmed "Says Rudi Garcia. The person confirms: " It's been four years since I played in the Premier League, and I became more mature, more aggressive. Asked about the influence of the midfielder in the group, Lamine Gassama is categorical: the Dakar has become one of the strongmen of Aliou Cisse, by word and gesture. " When he thinks we do not do enough in training or even in a match, he does not hesitate to tell us. He has character, personality. When he speaks, we listen to him. "
"Write our story"
His status as a manager does not prevent him from being one of the ambiancers of the group, especially when it comes to choosing the music – obviously Senegalese – that accompanies the team during his bus trips to get to the training sessions. And when a new player arrives in the selection, Idrissa Gueye, in the name of his seniority, is always one of the first to go to him to slip the words to put at ease. " He knew that eight years ago, and he knows it's important Adds Lamine Gassama.
His importance in the Senegalese gaming system makes him a player on whom Aliou Cisse relies constantly, in a register that is not necessarily his Everton. " In club, I have a defensive role, while with the Lions, I play more offensive He confirms. The goal he scored on Wednesday against Benin has come to demonstrate to those who still doubted that he also has a good technical background. For Rudi Garcia, Senegalese is today " a complete player, who has the level to compete in the Champions League in a big European club ".
The Paris-SG, who had taken an interest in him during the winter mercato, again showed his interest in the former resident of Diambars, a subject on which Gueye does not wish to expand. " I'm focused on the CAN and the semi-final against Tunisia, this is not the time to talk about that He answers politely. The midfielder is more vocal when it comes to the role of Lions coach Aliou Cissé, who has been in office since February 2015. " Technical stability is important for a selection and it is a man who was born in Senegal, who has the love of the country. He is rigorous and he is helping us write our story. And, perhaps so, to allow Idrissa Gueye to add a new line to her list.
With "The World Africa", follow the CAN 2019 on WhatsApp