Thursday Dec 19, 2019. 16:00
Libya international Hamdou Elhouni is hungry for more success after helping Esperance de Tunis finish fifth at the 2019 FIFA Club World Cup.
The attacking midfielder netted a hat-trick as the African champions thumped Qatari giants Al Sadd 6-2 in the fifth-place play-off match in Doha on Tuesday.
Elhouni is only the fourth player in FIFA Club World Cup history to score a hat-trick after FC Barcelona striker Luis Suarez, Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, and Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale.
The 25-year-old reflected on the Tunisian giants’ performance in the global tournament having lost 1-0 to Saudi Arabian side Al Hilal in the quarter-finals.
“We have to thank all the fans who support us through thick and thin. They stood behind us throughout the season and helped us win trophies,” Elhouni said.
“We came to Qatar determined to get past Al Hilal and progress to the semi-final, particularly as this is our third appearance at the tournament and we’re more experienced.
“However, that’s football and we didn’t have much luck against Al Hilal. We didn’t expect that emphatic a victory, but we didn’t want to leave the tournament empty-handed. We played well and deserved to win.”
“I could’ve scored four goals, but luck wasn’t on my side on certain occasions. However, at Esperance, it’s all about teamwork and it doesn’t matter who scores. Winning is what matters,” he added.
“We won trophies while marking 100 years since the club’s foundation. 2019 has been a special year, but it doesn’t end here for us. We must continue to win titles and strive to come back to the FIFA Club World Cup next year.
“When you play for Esperance, you have to compete for titles. That’s how it’s been since the club was founded.”