Senegal, cruelly, are out of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

The African nation was eliminated under the Fair Play Rule, the first time a team has been dumped out of the group stages via that method in World Cup history.

Following a 1-0 loss to Colombia, Senegal finished the group stages on equal points with Japan, and with an exactly equal goal differential tally, meaning the teams had to be split via the amount of yellow cards awarded to them throughout the tournament. Japan had acquired four, Senegal six, which elevated Japan to second place in Group H and eliminated Senegal from the tournament.

And we are all the poorer for it too, because the Senegalese squad – and its fans – are the beating heart and shimmering light of everything that is nice and good about the World Cup.

For starters, the side immediately won hearts with their infectious and truly wonderful training methods which included actual song and dance.

That already wonderful clip somehow gets even better when it’s set to the DuckTales theme song.

The dancing didn’t end on the training pitch either.

They danced after scoring the second of their 2 goals against Poland.

And they danced again with the fans after the final whistle blew.

Their fans, too, are a wonderful lot, as it turns out. Firstly, for being some of the most outrageously enthusiastic and noisy fans of any nation in the World Cup.

Secondly, because they openly embraced fans of other nations without hesitation, even going so far as to bond with them through the majesty of anime.

And thirdly, because instead of immediately swarming out of the ground and into the streets to celebrate a win, they took the time to help clean up the stadium instead.

The Senegal national team’s coach, Aliou Cissé, too, is worthy of adoration. Aside from being a snack-and-a-half, Cissé’s impassioned sideline celebrating caught the attention of viewers, partly for its fluid-yet-rigid movements, but mostly because it looks utterly badass.

And then there’s their star player, Sadio Mane, who – when he’s not holding Liverpool supporter’s children in random Asdas

…or copying teammates goal celebrations in hilarious fashion…

…is spending his spare time giving back to his hometown community by casually financing the build of an entire school.

Senegal is the greatest, and the World Cup is considerably worse off without them in it.

We love you, Senegal. We love you so much.

Image: Getty Images / Laurence Griffiths