Senegal wary of injuries ahead of World Cup, says Badou Ndiaye

Badou Ndiaye of Stoke City Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Senegal midfielder Papa Alioune Ndiaye has acknowledged that injuries remain a concern ahead of the Teranga Lions' World Cup campaign.

The West Africans are set to compete in their first World Cup since they reached the quarter final in 2002, and tournament represents a superb opportunity for a talented squad to emulate their legendary compatriots.

Certainly, the draw has been favourable to Senegal, but Ndiaye, known as Badou, realises that there's still much that can dent their optimism before they begin their campaign against Poland in Moscow on June 19.

"We are not there yet, we have to focus on our clubs first but I hope no one gets injured so that we all go to represent our country and play our best," the Stoke City midfielder told BBC Sport.

"We are talking about [the World Cup] and it's a great opportunity for our generation to play at the World Cup.

"We just have to be focused. If you think too much about it then injury will happen," he added. "We just have to play our game not to think so much about getting injured.

"With the help of God everything will be ok," he concluded, "as a professional you always have to look after yourself."

As well as Badou, Senegal will be able to call upon Premier League stars such as Sadio Mane, Idrissa Gueye, Cheikhou Kouyate, Pape Souare and Mame Biram Diouf for their second World Cup appearance.

As well as Poland, Senegal will have to find a way past Colombia and Japan if they're to escape from Group H and reach the knockouts.