by Alieu Ceesay in Dakar, Senegal
Gambians based in Mauritania are expected to throng the Olympic Stadium in Nouakchott in order to give massive support to the National Team when the Scorpions lock horns with the Maurabitones in an Afcon qualifier on Friday.
The Gambian community, Observer Sports sources in Mauritania said, wants to make the Scorpions feel at home as they take on their hosts in the first of a double-legged qualifier to be played over four days. Fans play a critical role in any team’s success and the move by Gambians based in Mauritania would no doubt motivate the squad.
The last time that the Scorpions won a game was against the same opposition on 27th March, 2015 in a 1-0 friendly win at Banjul’s Independence Stadium and Friday’s game will be played just two days before the one year anniversary of that encounter.
The Gambia’s last competitive win dates back to September 2013 when a Mustapha Toubabo Jarju brace secured a 2-0 World Cup qualifying win at home to Tanzania.
Ahead of the game, several ex-Scorpions have urged Sang Ndong’s charges to remain focused and play as team, but most importantly to capitalise on their goal scoring chances.
A win on Friday would be a good start for the newly installed Ndong, whose squad is currently in Mbour, Senegal, for a three-day camp.
“Wish them good luck. And if we play as a team we can do it. Let’s support the coach. My heart is with them all the way,” Midfielder Ebrima Sohna, who has been overlooked by Sang for this encounter, told Observer Sports.
Retired goalkeeper Pa Dembo Touray added: “Well my advice to them is to play as a team, do their best, as is not going to be an easy game because Mauritania is a good team. Let them help the coach to help them and besides we have a good team. The whole Gambia is behind them; we will give our support and prayers. They should believe that they can do this.”
The Gambian team, comprising of six locally based players, left Banjul for Dakar on Sunday where they were joined by four players selected from the Senegalese league. The remaining ten players, based in Europe, were expected to join the team yesterday before the group leaves together for Nouakchott tomorrow.