Saiss And N'Diaye Near World Cup

Romain Saiss and Alfred N’Diaye moved to within touching distance of the 2018 World Cup after impressive spells away with Morocco and Senegal respectively.

Saiss played the full 90 minutes in Morocco’s crucial victory over Gabon. A 3-0 success put them top of their qualifying group, knowing a draw in their final game against Ivory Coast will see them book a World Cup place.

Saiss' fellow midfielder, N’Diaye was an unused substitute as Senegal put themselves in a great position to reach Russia. A 2-0 win over Cape Verde lifted them top of their group with a game in hand on the two teams below them.

However, there was less positive news for Prince Oniangue, who featured for Congo in their latest qualifying defeat. A 2-1 reverse at Egypt left them with just one point from five matches, while victory took Egypt to Russia.

Qualification for the Under-21 European Championships took a dent for Portugal on Tuesday, as they were beaten 3-1 in Bosnia, despite Ruben Neves and Diogo Jota playing the full 90 minutes.

Meanwhile, Republic of Ireland’s Under-21s continued the positive feeling around the county with four points from their latest two qualifiers. A 0-0 draw with Norway last Thursday was followed up with a comprehensive 4-0 success over Israel. Connor Ronan featured as a substitute in the Norway stalemate.

Finally, Morgan Gibbs-White is enjoying himself away with the England Under-17s currently, where victories over Chile and Mexico have seen them qualify for the last 16 of the Under-17s World Cup with a game to go. The defender came off the bench in both wins and will hope for more minutes during the final group game against Iraq on Saturday.