Senegal put up a clinical performance to beat Bafana-Bafana in South-Africa and became the third African country after Nigeria and Egypt to qualify for the World Cup finals in Russia.
Sadio Mane, who made an earlier-than-expected return from injury, was key to the Teranga Lions’ victory.
He laid on a superb, defence-splitting pass for West Ham striker Diafra Sakho to slot past Bafana Bafana goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune, giving Senegal the perfect start after 12 minutes.
The Liverpool winger then helped to seal the game for the West Africans seven minutes before half time.
His close range shot was saved by Khune, the loose ball fortuitously rebounding into the net off the head of defender Thamsanqa Mkhize, who was prone on the ground.
Qualifying his team for the World Cup sees Senegal coach Aliou Cisse joining the late former Nigeria captain Stephen Keshi as individuals who have played at and qualified a team for Fifa’s showpiece event.
The sides meet again in Dakar on Tuesday in a game that is now of academic interest as Senegal join Nigeria and Egypt as the third of Africa’s five qualifiers.