Former Senegal forward Pape Thiaw says playing at the 2002 World Cup co-hosted by Korea and Japan was one of the most exceptional experiences in his career. 

Thiaw alongside other Senegalese greats such as El Hadj Diouf and Aliou Cisse were part of a starstudded Senegalese side that reached the quarterfinals at the 2002 global football bonanza. 

Speaking after visiting the FIFA museum in Zurich, the former FC Metz and Deportivo Alaves forward reminisced of his appearance at the world’s biggest football bonanza. 

“The 2002 World Cup was an extraordinary experience for me. It’s every child’s dream to play in a World Cup representing your nation. It was a dream come true playing in the World Cup which is the best football tournament in the world”. Pape Thiaw highlighted.

“It was the first time that Senegal played in a World Cup in 2002. We won the opening fixture against the defending champions France who had many stars within the team like Zidane and we went to Quarterfinals. There’s also the assist I made against Sweden for the winning goal. In Senegal that flick has been renamed the Pape Diaw Pass. ” 

Now aged 43, Pape Thiaw who played for outfits in France, Switzerland, Russia and Spain has become a household name in Africa after leading Senegal to glory to at the 2022 African Nations Football Championship. 

A coach described as pragmatic and on a constant quest to up his game, Pape Thiaw has turned to learning more about football by visiting the FIFA museum. An experience which he says is very enlightening. 

“I highly recommend to everyone who is a football fan to visit the FIFA Museum in Zurich. It’s a wonderful structure that resumes football. I’ve learned a lot of things visiting the museum and I intend to return.” the forner Senegal international concluded.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of FIFA.

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