Poland is facing Senegal for the first time
Poland have an impressive record against African opposition in the World Cup, having gone unbeaten in all three games (W1 D2).
Senegal have qualified for their second World Cup, after their inaugural participation in 2002 where they reached the quarter-finals before being eliminated by Turkey, while, This is Poland's eighth World Cup, but their first appearance since 2006. They last reached the knockout stages in 1986, failing to advance from the group stages in each of their last two appearances (2002 and 2006).
Poland have lost six of their last eight World Cup games (W2), whereas Senegal were unbeaten in their only previous group phase appearance at the World Cup (W1 D2), which included a victory in the opening game against defending champions France (1-0).
Poland have won only one of their seven opening games at the World Cup (D3 L3), a 3-2 win against Argentina in 1974. In fact, they have not scored a single goal in their last five openers.
Robert Lewandowski was the top scorer in the 2018 European World Cup qualifiers with 16 goals. He netted 57% of Poland's goals (16 out of 28). The only other Pole to score more than one goal was Kamil Grosicki (3), while, Diafra Sakho was the only Senegal player to score more than one goal in the third round of African qualifiers for the 2018 World Cup. Meanwhile, no player delivered more assists than Sadio Mane in that qualifying section (3).
This is Adam Nawalka's second major tournament as Poland manager after taking his country to the quarter-finals of Euro 2016, a tournament in which Poland remained unbeaten (W2 D3). He also played in five of Poland's six games at the 1978 World Cup, whereas, this will be Aliou Cisse's second major tournament as Senegal manager after the 2017 African Cup of Nations (quarter-finalist). He captained Senegal in their only previous World Cup appearance in 2002.