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The Senegalese celebrate Idrissa Gana Gueye's goal against Benin, in the quarter-finals of CAN 2019. RFI / Pierre René-Worms

Senegal will play the semifinals of the African Cup of Nations for the first time since 2006, after moving Benin this July 10 in Cairo. It is a pride and a relief for the "Lions" version CAN 2019. Senegalese who do not count however to stop in so good way.

From our special envoy in Cairo,

" It's a new generation that just realized that. We want to write our own story. Henri Saivet relishes the qualification of the Senegal team for the semifinals of the African Cup of Nations for the first time since 2006. The midfielder appreciates all the more the result he does not have. was easy to get in front of an eye-catching Benin selection this July 10 in Cairo.

" Since the start of this CAN 2019 , it says: no match is easy , says Henri Saivet. We met a complicated opponent to play. In the group stage, they did not lose to Cameroon and Ghana. Then they managed to eliminate Morocco in the round of 16. Faced with Beninese, we knew that it would take time. But we did not panic. We had a very clear idea of ​​what to do. The staff really worked so we could put this Benin selection in difficulty .

"The more the game progressed and the more difficult it was "

In fact, it was the "Squirrels" that caused problems for the "Lions" for almost an hour. " We faced a nice Beninese team ," said goal scorer Idrissa Gana Gueye. It was not easy. But we knew how to remain calm, from the beginning to the end ".

A slight doubt, however, crossed the minds of midfielder Pape Alioune Ndiaye during this quarterfinal of CAN 2019. And if Senegal fell into the same trap as Morocco? " Of course, we thought about it ," he says. But we were sure of our strength. We knew it was going to happen . " Even when a goal of Sadio Mané was invalidated for offside? "The more the game progressed and the more difficult it was ," concedes Badou 'Ndiaye. But we have a lot of mental strength in this team. There was a lot of bravery. And finally, we won .

" Show that you have a talented generation "

Even Sadio Mané, decisive smuggler, did not come apart when the video assistance to arbitration (VAR) , used for the very first time in the history of the tournament, deprived him of two goals. " With the VAR, I never had any trouble , evacuated the superstar. Sometimes it smiles on you and sometimes not. Today, it did not smile to me. Maybe the VAR will be on our side (sic) next time . "

Next time, it will be July 14 against the winner of Madagascar-Tunisia. An additional step towards the next goal of the "Lions": the final of CAN 2019, scheduled for July 19th. Defender Lamine Gassama smiles: " We are relieved. It is often said that Senegal has a beautiful generation. However, during the last CAN or at the 2018 World Cup, we had not made good journeys. So, it's good to have reached this stage of the competition. But now, we will have to go to the end to show that we have a talented generation. "