Edouard Mendy played a key role as Senegal beat Egypt on penalties to secure their place at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

The Chelsea goalkeeper, hardly troubled during the match, proved to be the shootout hero for the hosts as he saved from Mohamed Mostafa after Mo Salah and Zizo had both already missed from 12 yards.

Sadio Mane was left with the task of firing home the winning spot-kick following Mendy’s heroics and the Liverpool man made no mistake to send Senegal to the World Cup.

Senegal, already trailing 1-0 from the first leg in Cairo, restored parity on aggregate just four minutes into the tie to send the home fans wild.

Idrissa Gueye’s free-kick from the right-hand side wasn’t dealt with by the Egypt defence and as the ball dropped in the box, Boulaye Dia was in the right place at the right time to bundle over the line and hand Aliou Cisse’s men an early lead.

The Villarreal striker’s early finish is exactly what the game needed and sparked wild celebrations inside The Abdoulaye Wade Stadium, Senegal's flagship new stadium in Diamniadio.

Mendy was barely threatened by the Egyptian frontline, with the Senegal defence in front of him keeping the likes of Mo Salah at bay.

With the scores locked at 1-1 on aggregate and knowing that another goal would see either one book at place at the Qatar World Cup, both sides went searching for the winner with the best chance of the tie falling to the hosts.

Sadio Mane played in Ismaila Sarr through one-on-one but the Watford striker spurned the opportunity, firing his effort the wrong side of the post.

Thirty minutes of extra-time ensued with Senegal again looking the more likely to find a winner, but time and time again the Lions of Teranga were thwarted by Egypt goalkeeper Mohammed El Shenawy. A penalty shoot-out was required to settle this one, just as it was in the AFCON final 50 days ago.

Incredibly, the first four penalties of the shootout were all missed with Mendy keeping out Mostafa’s weak effort after Salah had already blazed over and Zizo fired wide.

Sarr and Dieng then netted for Senegal to leave Mane with the chance to fire the Lions to the World Cup which he gladly accepted.

Earlier on Tuesday, Mateo Kovacic came off the bench to inspire an incredible comeback victory for Croatia, who defeated Bulgaria 2-1 in a friendly in Qatar despite only having 10 men at the time.

Duje Caleta-Car was shown a red card for Croatia just after the hour, with Bulgaria then opening the scoring three minutes later through Kiril Despodov.

Kovacic had joined the action as a second-half substitute and played a key role alongside fellow substitute Luka Modric, who levelled the scores from the penalty spot with just under 15 minutes remaining.

Five minutes later, former Leicester City striker Andrej Kramaric fired home the winner in Doha with a neat finish after finding some space in the box.

Elsewhere, Armando Broja started for Albania in their goalless friendly draw with Georgia in Tirana.

In the younger age groups, Ian Maatsen came off the bench to help Netherlands Under-21s secure a big three points with victory over Switzerland in a vital European Championship qualifier at the top of Group E.

The left-sided player, spending this season on loan at Coventry City in the Championship, entered the action with around eight minutes remaining after fellow substitute Elayis Tavsan had already netted both goals in the 2-0 win.

There were England Euro qualifiers for Chelsea players at Under-21, Under-19 and Under-17 level on Tuesday, with Levi Colwill in the Under-21 side that played away to Albania and secured a 3-0 win. That places them three points behind group leaders Czech Republic with two games in hand.

For the Under-19s, Harvey Vale and Bashir Humphreys were involved in a 2-0 victory over Portugal that keeps the Young Lions ahead in their group. Teddy Sharman-Lowe was on the bench.

There was disappointment at Under-17 level with hopes of qualification for the European Championships gone after a 2-0 defeat by Luxembourg. Leo Castledine and Tudor Mendel-Idowu were involved with the former sent off near the end.

On Monday, Sam McClelland was a second-half substitute in Northern Ireland Under-21s’ 5-0 defeat away at the hands of the French Under-21 team. It was a friendly international.

The 20-year-old Chelsea defender has recently returned from injury and has featured in some in-house friendlies so far. Despite the result, it is a positive for him to add another 45 minutes under his belt.

At Under-18 level, Jimi Tauriainen was involved in a gruelling contest as he played 90 minutes in a 2-2 draw against Wales.

The Finn has adapted his game for Chelsea, operating as a deep-lying midfielder with an eye for goal in recent weeks with strikes against West Bromwich Albion and Aston Villa Under-18 teams. He carried on this scoring streak with a goal in this game as Finland replied to going a goal down with two of their own. With the win in sight seven minutes from time, Wales grabbed an equaliser to secure a draw against their Nordic opponents.

Lewis Hall and Charlie Webster were unused subs in England U18s’ 3-3 draw with Denmark.