Senegal midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate is likely to miss the game against host Qatar at the World Cup because of a right hamstring injury, his team said Wednesday.
Kouyate was “probably” out of Senegal’s second Group A game on Friday, the team said, forcing the African champion to reshuffle its lineup again having already lost forward Sadio Mane to injury days before the tournament started.
Kouyate, a key central midfielder for Senegal, went off on a stretcher in the second half of his team’s opening 2-0 loss to the Netherlands after he went up for a header and came down clutching his right thigh.
Defender Abdou Diallo was also injured and came off against the Netherlands. Senegal said Diallo had muscle cramps but was expected to return to training on Wednesday.
This year’s African Cup of Nations winner came to the World Cup with high hopes of making an impression but now is in a scrap to qualify for the knockout stage after losing to the Dutch through two late goals.
Host Qatar lost 2-0 to Ecuador in the opening game of the World Cup and is also desperate for a win in its second group match.