Tunisia aim to keep up perfect record

Tunisia aim to keep up perfect record
Youssef Msakni of Tunisia ©Mehrez Toujani/BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Jun 04, 2024. 15:00

Tunisia will aim to keep up their perfect record in Group H of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers when they host Equatorial Guinea at the Hammadi Agrebi Stadium in Tunis on the evening of Wednesday 5 June 2024.

Kick-off is at 21:00 CAT.

Tunisia tops the group with a full haul of six points, having defeated Sao Tome & Principe 4-0 at home and Malawi 1-0 away in the first two rounds of matches in November last year.

Youssef Msakni scored in both matches, but has been omitted from coach Montasser Louhichi’s squad, as has Hannibal Mejbri and Mouez Hassan, while Mortadha Ben Ouanes and Ghaylane Chaalali have been recalled.

Equatorial Guinea, meanwhile, secured 1-0 wins over Namibia (home) and Liberia (away) in November, but were then stripped of those results as punishment for fielding Emilio Nsue – who has been deemed an ineligible player by FIFA, despite him featuring regularly for the team in CAF-organised competitions.

As a result, Nzalang Nacional forfeited those games 3-0 and sit at the very bottom of the group – facing an incredible uphill battle in their quest to qualify for a first World Cup.

In head-to-head stats, Tunisia and Equatorial Guinea have met in nine previous matches, dating back to 2012. The Carthage Eagles have claimed five wins compared to three for Nzalang Nacional, while one game has been drawn.

The teams last met in qualifying for the most recent edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, with Tunisia winning 4-0 in Tunis in June 2022, while Equatorial Guinea triumphed 1-0 in the return game in Malabo a year later.

South African referee Abongile Tom will take charge of the match in Tunis. Tunisia will go on to play Namibia in Johannesburg on June 9, while Equatorial Guinea will next face Malawi in Malabo on June 10.

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