Senegal v Tunisia: Humble Lions to remain grounded, insists Cisse

By Sports Desk July 13, 2019

Senegal will not underestimate Tunisia as they bid to reach the Africa Cup of Nations final for the second time in their history.

The Lions beat Benin 1-0 courtesy of Idrissa Gueye's 69th-minute strike to reach the last four, keeping a clean sheet for the fourth time at this year's competition.

Only Algeria have managed to breach Senegal's steely defence so far, but on Sunday they go up against a Tunisia side who eased to a 3-0 quarter-final victory over Madagascar.

Senegal coach Aliou Cisse expects another tough challenge, telling a news conference: "Tunisia are a good team who do good things. We won't underestimate anyone and we won't lack concentration.

"There are still two matches to go. We came here with ambition, we hoped to reach the quarter-final, but we'll keep our feet on the ground.

"We haven't reached this stage since 2006. It's been 13 years and Senegal haven't been here, so this already represents a progression.

"We'll have more humility. I believe these are great professionals. I've always been confident in the work we're doing."

Tunisia put in an impressive second-half display against Madagascar, scoring twice in eight minutes before Naim Sliti added a third in second-half stoppage time.

"We are the first to beat Madagascar," Tunisia boss Alain Giresse said. "This proves the quality of this team in this competition.

"We are very satisfied we are in the semi-finals. Now we are at this stage of the competition, which Tunisia had been waiting for for many years. It was an objective.

"We have to play this semi-final with all our weapons and obviously try to go as far as possible. We know what to do about it. We know what to expect.

"We want to finish this competition in style."

 

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Senegal - Alfred Gomis

SPAL goalkeeper Gomis has conceded just once at this year's tournament but his toughest test awaits against Tunisia.

Tunisia - Youssef Msakni

Msakni was instrumental in turning the quarter-final against Madagascar in his team’s favour, providing the assist for Ferjani Sassi's opener before netting the second himself.


KEY OPTA FACTS

- It will be the sixth encounter between Senegal and Tunisia in the Africa Cup of Nations, but the first in semi-finals.
- Senegal have won their last three games in the Africa Cup of Nations, their longest streak in the competition.
- Tunisia will play their sixth Africa Cup of Nations semi-final. The Carthage Eagles have qualified for the final twice previously, against Zambia in 1996 and against Nigeria in 2004.
- Senegal have kept a clean sheet in seven of their last nine games in the Africa Cup of Nations (3 goals conceded overall), after failing to do so in each of their previous 14.
- Tunisia's striker Wahbi Khazri has been involved in 29 shots in the 2019 edition (16 shots attempted, 13 chances created), more than any other player.

Related items

  • Championship: Leeds keep pace at the summit, Moore good news for Wigan Championship: Leeds keep pace at the summit, Moore good news for Wigan

    Leeds United closed the gap to Championship leaders West Brom on Wednesday, while there were welcome wins for Barnsley and Wigan Athletic at the bottom of the table.

    The Baggies had moved seven points clear at the summit with a 2-0 victory over Preston North End 24 hours earlier, but Leeds cut the deficit by completing a league double over lowly Middlesbrough.

    Fulham are back up to third after they left it late to see off Swansea City, while Steven Fletcher struck deep into stoppage time as Sheffield Wednesday triumphed 1-0 over Charlton Athletic.

    Millwall missed the chance to move closer to the play-off places as they were held 0-0 at home by Birmingham City. There were also no goals at Ewood Park, as Blackburn Rovers drew with Stoke City.

     

    KLICH-ING INTO GEAR FOR LEEDS

    Marcelo Bielsa's side triumphed 1-0 for a third successive league outing, Mateusz Klich scoring the only goal in first-half stoppage time at the Riverside.

    The hosts managed just two shots on target as they drew a blank yet again – they have not found the net since a 2-2 draw away at fellow strugglers Wigan on February 11.

    Fulham are five points behind Leeds in the standings; Aleksandar Mitrovic missed an 89th-minute penalty but made amends before the final whistle, grabbing the winner in added time at Craven Cottage.

     

    BATTLE TO BEAT THE DROP HEATING UP

    After Luton Town upset Brentford on Tuesday, Barnsley found themselves propping up the rest prior to kick-off at Hull City.

    However, their recent revival continued with a 1-0 victory, Cauley Woodrow the scorer for the visitors in the 42nd minute.

    Wigan still occupy the third and final relegation berth but now only trail Middlesbrough on goal difference after a resounding 3-0 result away at Reading.

    Kieffer Moore broke the deadlock with an audacious back-heeled finish, with Jamal Lowe and Michael Jacobs – who struck in the ninth minute of added time – also scoring for the Latics.

  • Jamaica's U20 girls defeat Canada to advance to round of 16 in World Cup qualifiers Jamaica's U20 girls defeat Canada to advance to round of 16 in World Cup qualifiers

    Goals from Captain Jody Brown, Lacey Murray and Marlee Fray spurred Jamaica to a 3-1 victory over Canada in the CONCACAF Women's U20 World Cup qualifying championship in the Dominican Republic on Wednesday.

  • I thought this might not happen – Beckham explains Inter Miami difficulties I thought this might not happen – Beckham explains Inter Miami difficulties

    David Beckham revealed there were times he thought Inter Miami "might not happen" as the franchise prepare for their opening MLS game.

    Under the guidance of head coach Diego Alonso, Inter Miami begin their campaign with a trip to Los Angeles to face LAFC on Sunday.

    Former Manchester United, Real Madrid and England star Beckham, a co-owner of the new team, had dreamt of launching an MLS team after playing for LA Galaxy, but the 44-year-old was still surprised by the difficulties.

    "It has been a long journey," Beckham told a news conference on Wednesday, via the BBC.

    "There was never a moment when I said I would walk away but there were moments when I thought this might not happen.

    "I have always loved a challenge. I didn't realise how big a challenge this was going to be, even down to putting tiles in the showers."

    Nashville will also enter MLS in 2020 and recent expansion teams LAFC and Atlanta United have made a huge impact.

    Atlanta were MLS Cup champions in 2018 and have made the play-offs in each of their first three seasons, while LAFC reached the postseason in their first two campaigns.

    "Kicking the first ball this weekend is going to be success for me," said Beckham, who teamed up with Jorge Mas in 2017.

    "But I didn't want to be in partnership with someone who was in it for a vanity project. I want my children to be able to say, 'My dad built this club'."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.