Mathieu Dossevi of Togo battles for the ball with Chancel Mbemba of DR Congo during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Finals football match between Togo and DR Congo at the Port Gentil Stadium in Gabon on 24 January 2017 ©Chris Ricco/BackpagePix
Thursday Oct 05, 2017. 11:00
AfricanFootball takes a closer look at the players to watch ahead of this weekend’s round of 2018 World Cup qualifiers. Today’s focus is on Group A: Tunisia, DR Congo, Guinea and Libya.
Group A fixtures
Saturday 7 October
Guinea v Tunisia - Stade du 28 Septembre, Conakry - 19h00 CAT
Libya v DR Congo - Stade Mustapha Ben Jannet, Monastir - 19h00 CAT
Tunisia - Wahbi Khazri
With Tunisia looking to claim a potentially decisive away win over Guinea on Saturday evening, they will need their attacking players to take advantage of every opportunity which comes their way. Playmaker Wahbi Khazri will be tasked with slicing open the hosts’ defence and hopefully adding to the one goal he has scored (a penalty against Libya just under a year ago) in this group thus far.
DR Congo - Chancel Mbemba
Chancel Mbemba scored for DR Congo in their 2-2 draw at home to Tunisia last month but also suffered an injury which put him out of contention for a couple of weeks at Premier League club Newcastle United. The Leopards will hope their versatile 23-year-old is fit and firing for their trip to Monastir in Tunisia, where they will come up against an already-eliminated Libya in a must-win fixture.
Guinea - Alkhaly Bangoura
The scorer of Guinea’s winning goal in the 3-2 triumph over Libya in the last international window, Alkhaly Bangoura is making a name for himself with the Syli Nationale. The 21-year-old forward plays his club football with Tunisian giants Etoile du Sahel and will feel quite comfortable taking on the Carthage Eagles. Guinea will hope Bangoura can reproduce the form which made him a hero in their last match in Conakry.
Libya - Hamdou Elhouni
The scorer of Libya’s goal in the 1-0 win over Guinea last month, Hamdou Elhouni will be hoping to continue his strong form for the Mediterranean Knights. Libya are out of the running to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, but they can certainly affect DR Congo’s chances by winning in Monastir and doing their fellow North Africans Tunisia a major favour.