The knockout round of the 2021 African Cup of Nations is set to begin and the Round of 16 draws promise a variety of exciting encounters, one of them being Nigeria versus Tunisia in the second game of the knockout stage.
Nigeria have been one of the most in-form teams of the tournament after coming out comfortably top of group E with three wins from three including a win against Mo Salah’s Egypt. The Super Eagles had fun in their group scoring a total of 6 goals whilst conceding just once which was from the penalty spot. The West Africans will look to continue their blistering form in a tricky fixture against historical rivals Tunisia who struggled to finish third place in their group behind Mali and Gambia.
Tunisia had the opportunity to finish second in their group but unfortunately lost to Gambia in their final group game, which was their second loss of the tournament. They managed to qualify for the next round as one of the best losers thanks to a convincing 4-0 win over Mauritania. They will be looking to return to winning ways against Nigeria in the knockout stages to book a ticket in the quarter-finals.
Tunisia versus Nigeria have always been a very tough fixture going by history. However, things seem to have changed recently and despite the fact that Tunisia have a higher FIFA ranking than Nigeria, the Super Eagles have been tipped by the bookmakers as clear favourites to get the win at 1.54 on Sportsbet.io. Tunisia are placed on a whopping 7.40 to get the win over 90 minutes while a draw, which has been the most prominent result in the past years between these two sides, is placed at 3.55. Nigeria is placed at 1.20 to qualify to Tunisia’s 4.00.
Coach Augustine Eguavoen will have his full squad available for the game and his only issue will be a selection headache as to which player will start and which will be on the bench.
However, it is a different story for Tunisia who will be without second choice goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha after a red card in the last game against Gambia. Rumours have it that Tunisia’s camp have been hit by COVID and speculations suggest that around 11 players will be out for the game.
The game kicks off at 8 pm Nigerian time in the Roumde Adija Stadium in Garoua, Cameroon. Although form and squad depth favour the Super Eagles, this fixture has always been a difficult one for them which is evident in their head to head in which both teams have 6 wins apiece and 8 draws.