Cisse sacrifices Senegal chances
By Paul Higham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Aliou Cisse will sacrifice his international prospects to help Portsmouth.Aliou Cisse says that Portsmouth's Premiership survival is more important than regaining his international place with Senegal.
The former Birmingham skipper returns to St Andrews with Pompey on Saturday, and will figure in defence for Alain Perrin's side due to an injury crisis.
Cisse says that playing at the back will not enhance his chances of returning to Senegal, but says that has taken a back seat to Portsmouth's Premiership campaign.
"I played right back two years ago for a while so that in itself is no problem for me but I still think my best quality is in midfield," said Cisse.
"If this helps the manager here for me to play in defence then I am happy to do it but it won't help me with Senegal.
"At least I am playing regularly again and that is the most important thing.
"I'm proud of being a Senegalese international but that's not the priority at the moment.
"Maybe I can get back again but it is secondary to helping my club stay up in The Premiership."
The 29-year-old does miss playing for his country, but believes he can make his way back into Guy Stephan's side.
"Now they are doing well in qualifying for Germany but without me," said Cisse.
"I lost my place because I didn't play much at Birmingham. There were personal problems and I only started about six games. I had many on the bench.
"I have kept in touch with the new Senegal coach and I have not given up hope of getting back in the side but it can wait.
"Football is crazy. Before I came to England I was captain of Senegal and had been to a quarter final of a World Cup.
"Now I have had to fight just to get a game but I don't mind doing that."