Tunisia national football team

The Tunisia national football team (Arabic: منتخب تونس لكرة القدم‎; French: Équipe de Tunisie de football) represents Tunisia in men's international football since their maiden match in 1957. It is governed by the Tunisian Football Federation, founded in 1957 after the Tunisian independence in 1956. Tunisia are colloquially known as Les Aigles de Carthage (The Eagles of Carthage). The team's colours are red and white, and the Bald eagle its symbol, Periods of regular Tunisian representation at the highest international level, from 1962 to 1978, from 1994 to 2008 and again from 2014 onwards, Most of Tunisia's home matches are played at the Stade Olympique de Radès in Radès since 2001, The team represents both FIFA and CAF.

Tunisia
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)نسور قرطاج
Aigles de Carthage
(Eagles of Carthage)
AssociationTunisian Football Federation
ConfederationCAF (Africa)
Sub-confederationUNAF (North Africa)
Head coachMondher Kebaier
CaptainWahbi Khazri
Most capsSadok Sassi (116)
Top scorerIssam Jemâa (36)
Home stadiumStade Olympique de Radès
Stade El Menzah
FIFA codeTUN
First colours
Second colours
Third colours
FIFA ranking
Current 27 Steady (16 July 2020)[1]
Highest14 (April 2018)
Lowest65 (July 2010)
First international
 Tunisia 4–2[2] Libya 
(Tunis, Tunisia; 2 June 1957)
Biggest win
 Tunisia 8–1 Chinese Taipei 
(Rome, Italy; 18 August 1960)
 Tunisia 7–0 Togo 
(Tunis, Tunisia; 7 January 2000)
 Tunisia 7–0 Malawi 
(Radès, Tunisia; 26 March 2005)
 Tunisia 8–1 Djibouti 
(Radès, Tunisia; 12 June 2015)
Biggest defeat
 Hungary 10–1 Tunisia
(Budapest, Hungary; 24 July 1960)
World Cup
Appearances5 (first in 1978)
Best result9th (Group stage) (1978)
Africa Cup of Nations
Appearances19 (first in 1962)
Best resultGold medal africa.svg Champions (2004)
African Nations Championship
Appearances2 (first in 2011)
Best resultGold medal africa.svg Champions (2011)
Confederations Cup
Appearances1 (first in 2005)
Best resultGroup stage (2005)
WebsiteFTF.org.tn (in French)

Tunisia's national team have participated in three quadrennial major football competitions. It appeared in the end stages of five FIFA World Cups and eighteen Africa Cup of Nations, and featured at four Olympic football tournaments. Nevertheless, they created history in that 1978 tournament in Argentina by becoming the first African side to win a World Cup match, beating Mexico 3–1. They also held defending champions West Germany to a goalless draw before bowing out. They have since qualified for three tournaments in succession, in 1998, 2002 and 2006 before returning in the last edition held in Russia in 2018; however in spite of this rich record, Tunisia had never been able to progress out the group stage in any FIFA World Cup or Summer Olympics tournaments. Tunisia has long-standing football rivalries with North African teams: Egypt, Morocco and Algeria. In fact, the Tunisian team has always met with them, whether through friendly matches or World Cup qualifiers and the African Cup of Nations. Tunisia is one of the most successful African national teams in competitions, having won one African Cup of Nations, as tournament hosts in 2004. They have also been runners-up twice in 1965 as hosts and 1996 held in South Africa.

Tunisia is a notorious case as this is one of the most successful and frequent participant in major African competitions, yet fails to deliver the same expectation outside Africa. Although Tunisia has won one AFCON and participated in four Summer Olympics and five FIFA World Cup, the Tunisians have all failed to progress beyond the group stage of Olympics and World Cup.

HistoryEdit

Beginning (1928–1956)Edit

 
The Tunisian football team in 1939.

Before independence, an unofficial team was formed in 1928, comprising the best Tunisian players from the Tunisian League. The team's first match was on 11 March 1928, against the France national football B team; Tunisia lost 8–2.[3] Their next friendlies, against the same team on 23 March 1930 and 26 March 1933, also resulted in heavy defeats: 0–5 and 1–6 respectively. Tunisia had to wait until 1939 for their first match win: a 4–1 victory over a team of amateur footballers of Paris.

The most capped players of this period are :

Post independence (1956–1962)Edit

 
Chedly Zouiten (second from left), was the first president of the Tunisian Football Federation.

As soon as independence was proclaimed in 1956, Tunisian football leaders took the necessary steps to create an exclusively national body to replace the Tunisian Football League (an offshoot of the French Football Federation). These steps led to the creation of the Tunisian Football Federation (FTF) headed by Chedly Zouiten, which was approved on 29 March 1957. Recognized as a public utility, the FTF has since invested in its dual mission of promoting football and managing the national competition as well as the different teams representing Tunisia in international competitions. In spite of that, Tunisia's national team has been set up before independence. Tunisian coach Rachid Turki has been appointed as Tunisia's first coach. A friendly match was held two days before independence, and this was in front of the Southwest French team. Tunisia succeeded in winning the match thanks to the goal of Ghariani.

 
Chetali in 1960. He was one of the best players in the history of Tunisia.

The Tunisian squad was the following: Zine el-Abidine Chennoufi, Sadok Dhaou (then Mohieddine Zeghir), Azaiez Jaballah, Driss Messaoud, Hassen Tasco, Abdou Béji, Ali Hannachi « Haj Ali », Amedée Scorsone, Hédi Braïek, Noureddine Diwa, Khemais Ghariani.

The Tunisian team also played a match with the Austrian team FC Admira Wacker Mödling on 30 December of the same year and managed to win 4–1 thanks to two goals from both Dهwa and Braïek and the Tunisian squad was as follows : Mohamed Bennour (then Houcine El Bez), Youssef Sehili, Azaiez Jaballah, Mokhtar Ben Nacef, Mehrez Jelassi, Abdou Béji, Ali Hannachi « Haj Ali », Abderrahman Ben Ezzedine, Hédi Braïek, Noureddine Diwa (then Khemais Ghariani), Hammadi Henia.

Tunisia gained independence from France on 20 March 1956. The Tunisian Football Federation was founded on 29 March 1957 and became affiliated to FIFA and the Confederation of African Football in 1960. The independent Tunisia played their first match against Algeria on 1 June 1957, in the midst of the Algerian War; Tunisia lost 2–1. They played their first official match at the 1957 Pan Arab Games where they won Libya 4–3 after scoring the first Tunisian goal in an official competition by Farzit. They also managed to get through Iraq and Lebanon before losing in the final against Syria 3–1. In 1960, the Yugoslavian Milan Kristić to be the first foreigner to coach the national team so Tunisia qualified for 1960 Summer Olympics which was their first international event after beating Malta, Morocco and Sudan; on 24 July 1960, the team experienced its biggest-ever defeat, losing 10–1 against Hungary. However, less than a month later, on 18 August 1960, Tunisia recorded their biggest-ever win: an 8–1 thumping of Taiwan. As for the Olympic Games, the results were very poor in the first game and despite the opening of the scoring by Kerrit in the third minute, but the Polish team returned in the game and won 6–1. They also lost to Argentina 2–1 before being defeated again, this time against Denmark 3–1.

Golden generation (1962–1978)Edit

 
Habib Bourguiba, President of the Republic, amid the Tunisian side that won the Palestine Cup in 1973.

Frane Matošić was appointed to coach the team as the second Yugoslav coach of the Tunisian team after Kristić led Tunisia to qualify for the Olympics. In 1962, Tunisia entered the African Cup of Nations qualifiers for the first time: the team qualified for the tournament after overcoming Morocco and Nigeria and went on to finish third after beating Uganda in the third-place match. Tunisian federation has appointed French coach André Gérard to train the team to continue contracting with foreign coaches. The team succeeded in crowning the 1963 Arab Nations Cup to be the first championship for the team, after achieving impressive results, including winning over Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Kuwait. Tunisia also qualified for the 1963 Africa Cup of Nations despite the exit from the first round. CAF decided that Tunisia would host the 1965 Africa Cup of Nations , despite the fact that only 9 years have passed since the independence of the country, in addition to a distinguished generation of players, most notably Abdelmajid Chetali and Attouga who reached the final after beating Ethiopia 4–0 in the opening match in Stade Chedly Zouiten,[4] but they lost 3–2 to Ghana in extra-time of the final.[5] Despite this early success, Tunisia did not enter the Cup of Nations again until 1976 in Ethiopia, and did not qualify for one until 1978.

 
Tunisia at the 1978 FIFA World Cup in Argentina.

In 1973, however, the team entered the Palestine Cup of Nations and won in dominant fashion, winning all six of their matches overcoming Syria, Egypt, Palestine, Yemen and Iraq, scoring 19 goals, and conceding only three with the Tunisian coach Ameur Hizem.

 
Chetali qualified Tunisia for their first World Cup.

In February 1975, after a short experience of the Hungarian coach André Nagy, the coach of ES Sahel, Abdelmajid Chetali was hired. This coincided with the return of the team to the competition in the African Cup of Nations before going out against Sudan before it succeeded to qualify after the absence of 13 years in 1978 after overcoming Egypt and Guinea in qualifying. At the same time, the team was able to qualify for the first time in the FIFA World Cup in 1978 after a remarkable performance in the qualifiers led by a distinguished generation such as Mokhtar Dhouib, Néjib Ghommidh, Raouf Ben Aziza and Tarak Dhiab. They have reserved the only African seat by going to teams such as Morocco, Algeria, Nigeria and Egypt. Before the World Cup, Tunisia competed in the African Cup and won Uganda to find themselves in the semi-finals before losing to hosts Ghana to play third place match with Nigeria. Tunisia initially took the lead, but when Nigeria scored a controversial equalizer in the 42nd minute, the Tunisians walked off the pitch in protest and Nigeria were awarded a 2–0 victory by default.

At the World Cup in Argentina, Tunisia made an immediate impact by coming from behind after preparations were not at the desired level after a draw with Hungary 2–2 and a defeat from France 2–0 and another big defeat against Netherlands 4–0.

 
Kaabi, the first Tunisian player to score in the World Cup.

In the first game, Mexico managed to advance through a penalty in the first half to end the break 1–0 for the Mexican team. And before the start of the second half, Tunisian coach Chetali threw the Tunisian flag in front of the players and left the changing room. Tunisia managed to return to the game after Ali Kaabi scored the equalizer for Tunisia to enter history as the first Tunisian player to score a World Cup goal in the 55th minute before adding two goals to finish the game 3–1.

In the second match, they made a good performance against Poland before the team lost 1–0, but in the last game it was just around the corner to win the defending champion West Germany before the game ended 0–0. This performance has been admired by most analysts who did not expect it, and that has contributed to increasing the number of African teams qualified for the World Cup to become two. The team was received at Tunis–Carthage International Airport by Tunisians, provided by Tunisian President Habib Bourguiba, telling the players that they had accomplished the task of 50 ambassadors, because they contributed to the known of Tunisia internationally.

After this impressive performance, coach Abdelmajid Chetali decided to resign after a remarkable period in which he managed to reach the Tunisian national team to the international level. However, the period that will come after his resignation will be filled with several disturbances that have lasted for years.

Decline (1978–1994)Edit

 
Abdelhamid Hergal, one of the best Tunisian players of the eighties.

Following their first experience of World Cup football, Tunisia experienced a sudden decline after the passage of Tunisian coaches such as Ameur Hizem and Hmid Dhib who withdrew the team in the World Cup qualifiers in 1982 against Nigeria despite the participation of dozens of players who played the previous edition. Between 1980 and 1992, the team managed to qualify for only two tournaments – the 1982 African Cup of Nations and the 1988 Summer Olympics – and in both they were knocked out in the first round. In fact, Tunisia qualified for the African Cup hosted by neighbor Libya with Polish coach Ryszard Kulesza after being banned in 1980 African Cup but achieved negative results: drew with Cameroon 1–1 in the first game before being defeated against Libya 2–0 and Ghana 1–0 to withdraw by only one point. Kulesza failed also to qualify for the 1984 African Cup after the defeat against Egypt, which precipitated his departure. Coach Youssef Zouaoui was appointed to oversee the team and had a good start by winning friendly matches against Nigeria 5–0 and Canada 2–0 and also surpassed Benin and Guinea in the first rounds of the World Cup qualifiers in 1986. However, he failed to qualify for the 1986 African Cup of Nations after the defeat to the Libyan team, which was strong in that period. But that did not prevent them from reaching the last round of the World Cup qualifiers by beating Nigeria before being defeated in front of Algeria, which qualified for the second time.

 
Tarak Dhiab scored Tunisia's qualification goal for the 1988 Olympic Games.

The former Cameroon coach Jean Vincent was hired but failed to qualify for the 1988 African Cup in Morocco after defeat against Algeria. He also achieved catastrophic results in the Football at the African Games with defeats against Cameroon, Madagascar and Kenya. He was immediately sacked. Taoufik Ben Othman was appointed who was the former assistant coach of Chetali in the team of 1978 team. The results improved relatively as they qualified for the Olympic Games after surpassing Morocco (thanks to the goal of Tarak Dhiab in the last minute) and Egypt in the qualifiers but Ben Othman was sacked days before the start of the competition after the poor results in the 1988 Arab Nations Cup and the failure to win in their matches against Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Egypt and Iraq, as well as the bad results in friendly matches against Malta, Finland and East Germany.

 
Faouzi Benzarti supervised the team after the first match of AFCON 1994.

The Polish coach Antoni Piechniczek was temporarily appointed and supervised the team in the first round of World Cup qualifiers 1990 and also In the finals of the Olympic Games where results were not good after drawing with China 0–0 and Sweden 2–2 and a heavy defeat from West Germany 1–4.

Mokhtar Tlili was appointed coach but the results did not improve by not qualifying for the African Cup in Algeria 1990 after the heavy defeat to Senegal, which precipitated his departure and the arrival of Antoni Piechniczek again and did not succeed in the World Cup qualifiers in 1990 after the defeat in the last round against Cameroon to be contracted with coach Mrad Mahjoub. Although he was unable to qualify for the 1992 African Cup again, the federation renewed confidence in him because of the respectable performance he had given in the qualifiers because the team was eliminated with goal difference to Egypt, in addition to winning Belgium in a friendly match but the early exit from the World Cup qualifiers in 1994 contributed to his dismissal after a draw with Morocco to be replaced by coach Youssef Zouaoui before the 1994 African Cup to be hosted in Tunisia so the team managed to break the streak in 1994 by hosting that year's African Cup of Nations replacing original hosts Zaire, but the result was catastrophic and unexpected with a defeat by Mali 2–0 in the opening game at El Menzah Stadium in front of 45,000, which contributed to the dismissal of Zouaoui after the opening match and compensated by Faouzi Benzarti, who drew with Zaire in the second game finishing bottom of the group.

Beginning of Resurgence (1994–2002)Edit

 
Kasperczak guided the team to qualify for the 1998 World Cup after 20 years.

After confirming the decline of the Tunisian football, it was decided to hire a coach who knows the African football well. The former coach of Côte d'Ivoire Henryk Kasperczak was appointed, and the team's results were gradually improved. They managed to qualify for the African Cup for the first time in 14 years through the qualification after overcoming Liberia and Senegal.

At the finals of 1996 African Cup of Nations, Tunisia began badly after a draw against Mozambique and a defeat from Ghana, but they finished second in their group, putting them through to the quarter-finals surpassing the first round for the first time since 1978 after winning Côte d'Ivoire 3–1. Tunisia went on to beat Gabon in the quarter-finals and Zambia in the semi-finals 4–2 to reach their first major final in 31 years, but lost to host country South Africa 2–0.

 
Krautzun qualified the team for the 2002 World Cup.

This performance was appreciated by the Tunisian fans who did not expect this development in the team led by a new generation, most notably Chokri El Ouaer, Zoubeir Baya and Adel Sellimi. They were also received by President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali at the airport.

In that period Tunisia qualified to the 1996 Olympic Games after surpassing Guinea. The team did not rise to what was expected after the defeat from Portugal and the United States with the same result 2–0 in addition to the draw with Argentina 1-1 which eliminated them from the group stage.

Still under the leadership of Kasperczak, They qualified for the 1998 Africa Cup of Nations after defeating Guinea and Sierra Leone and qualified for the final quarter in the lead of the group with a win over DR Congo, Togo and defeat from Ghana. In the quarter-final, where they were eliminated in a penalty shootout by host country Burkina Faso.

In that period, the team qualified for the second round of World Cup qualifiers after beating Rwanda. Tunisia was placed in the group 2 with Egypt, which was a strong candidate for the qualification, but Tunisia managed to qualify for the 1998 FIFA World Cup for the second time in its history and the first since 20 years after winning Egypt, Liberia and Namibia. The team played some friendly matches before the World Cup with Wales (won 4–0), Austria (lost 1–2) and Chile (lost 2–3). In the finals, they failed to advance from the group stages, losing 2–0 to England and 1–0 to Colombia, and drawing 1–1 with Romania. Kasperczak was sacked and replaced with the Italian coach Francesco Scoglio, who qualified the team for the 2000 Africa Cup of Nations ideally after winning over Algeria, Uganda and Liberia.

 
Trabelsi participated with Tunisia in the 1998, 2002 and 2006 World Cups.

Tunisia qualified for the quarter-finals of the competition for the third consecutive time with difficulty after the defeat in the first round of Nigeria and the victory over Congo and draw with Morocco as the team managed to qualify for the semi-final by overcoming Egypt before they lost three to Cameroon and finish the competition in fourth place with a loss from South Africa on penalty shootout.

The following year, Scoglio departed to rejoin Genoa CFC, sparking a period of severe instability. The German coach Eckhard Krautzun, was appointed and qualified the team to the 2000 Africa Cup of Nations with difficulty with a group that includes Morocco, Gabon and Kenya, he Succeeded to lead the team to the World Cup in South Korea and Japan for the third time in its history with a difficult group, including Côte d'Ivoire and the DR Congo. Krautsen was sacked surprisingly despite the good results after a sharp dispute with the Tunisian Football Federation officials. Henri Michel replaced him, but was sacked when Tunisia crashed out of the 2002 African Cup of Nations without scoring a single goal after a draw with Senegal and Zambia and defeat from Egypt. Finally, Ammar Souayah took over in time for the 2002 World Cup; The team drew in friendly matches with Norway and South Korea and were defeated by Denmark and Slovenia. In the finals, Tunisia could not do better than 1998 performance, drawing 1–1 with Belgium but losing 2–0 to Russia and co-hosts Japan making the federation look for a big coach before the start of the 2004 African Cup hosted by Tunisia.

Lemerre era: African domination (2002–2008)Edit

 
Lemerre, the most successful manager of Tunisia after winning the 2004 African Cup.

After the 2002 World Cup, former France manager Roger Lemerre took over, becoming Tunisia's fifth manager in less than two years. As well as steadying the ship, Lemerre was tasking with winning the 2004 African Cup of Nations, which Tunisia would be hosting because his coaching career entitles him to coach the team as he won the 1998 FIFA World Cup as an assistant, the UEFA Euro 2000 and the 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup. During the build-up to the tournament, the team established themselves as favourites with several impressive friendly results, holding France and Portugal to 1–1 draws and beating Sweden 1–0 in addition to the good results with the African giants by beating Senegal, Cameroon, Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire. All these indicators in addition to hosting the tournament put the Tunisian team strong candidate to win the cup.

Tunisia starting line-up against Morocco at the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations Final, a match they won 2–1.

Tunisia advanced unbeaten from the group stage, beating Rwanda 2–1 in the opening match of the tournament before winning the second game against DR Congo 3–0, and drawing 1–1 with Guinea. The team then beat Senegal 1–0 in the quarter-final thanks to the goal of Jawhar Mnari in the 65th minute and Nigeria on penalties 5–3 in the semi-final after a 1–1 draw to face Morocco in the final, where goals from Francileudo Santos and Ziad Jaziri gave Tunisia a 2–1 win which means that Tunisia won the Africa Cup of Nations for the first time in its history. Lemerre became the first coach to win two different continental tournaments, having previously won Euro 2000 with France. The victory gave birth to the Tunisian team's present nickname, the "Eagles of Carthage", and accordingly, the team's badge was changed to its current design, which incorporates an eagle.

In the same period, Tunisia qualified for the fourth time in its history for the 2004 Olympic Games surpassing after a strong group including Egypt, Nigeria and Senegal overcame itself in Athens in the face of big teams. Tunisia was just around the qualification to the quarter-finals of the competition but the goal difference prevented it. After a 1–1 draw with Australia and a 2–0 defeat by Argentina to add to beat Serbia 3–2 to leave good impressions in the competition and devote their international presence.

2004 African Cup of Nations win qualified them for the 2005 FIFA Confederations Cup, where they were drawn in a difficult group including host Germany, Argentina and Australia. The opening match of this tournament was between Tunisia and Argentina, who narrowly won 2–1. In the second match, the Tunisians fought back to the 74th minute where they accepted three goals from the German team to finish the score 3–0, while in the third game they managed to beat Australia 2 -0 to leave good impressions.

 
Tunisia and Germany while warming up before the match during 2005 FIFA Confederations Cup.

In the same year the Tunisian team played the World Cup qualifiers in 2006, and they succeeded in acquiring Guinea, Kenya, Malawi, Botswana and Morocco, which drew them in the last round 2–2 at Stade 7 November in front of 65,000 spectators, which enabled the Tunisian national to qualify for the World Cup for the fourth time in its history and third in a row, which is dedicated to the African domination of the Tunisian team. The following year, they failed to defend their continental cup of Nations title, losing to Nigeria in the quarter-finals on penalties 6–5 after a 1–1 draw despite the good start in the group stage after winning Zambia 4–1 and South Africa 2–0.

 
Tunisia-Ukraine match during 2006 FIFA World Cup.

Before the start of the 2006 World Cup, they played some friendly matches which were generally good after a 0–0 draw over Uruguay and a 3–0 victory over Belarus. In the finals they failed again in the group stage after a draw in the first round with Saudi Arabia 2–2 in Munich. In the second round the team played with Spain which was one of the most powerful teams in the world led by Raúl, Iker Casillas, Carles Puyol and Sergio Ramos and Tunisia managed to progress in the result in the 8th minute through the goal of Jawhar Mnari, but the team conceded 3 goals in the last minutes to defeat hard 3–1. In the last round, the team lost to Ukraine 1–0 thanks to Shevchenko's goal with a penalty to leave Tunisia the World Cup with a single point

After the World Cup, the team managed to qualify for the 2008 African Cup after qualifying over Sudan, Seychelles and Mauritius. Tunisia has been a candidate for the African Championship after the outstanding performance in recent years in addition to the presence of seven players from the Étoile Sportive du Sahel, which was the champions of Africa at that time and Tunisia was able to qualify for the quarter-finals in the lead after beating South Africa 3–1 and tie With Senegal 2–2 and Angola 0–0 but they were very hard to beat Cameroon 3–2 in extra time to leave Tunisia from the quarter-finals again. On 30 June 2008, Roger Lemerre left Tunisia after six years, the longest reign of any of the team's coaches. He was replaced by Portuguese coach Humberto Coelho.

Disappointments (2008–2014)Edit

 
Tunisia-Mozambique on 6 June 2009 for 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification.

Under Coelho, Tunisia qualified for the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations and the World Cup qualifiers started well with a win over Kenya[6][7] and Mozambique[8][9] and a tie-up with Nigeria in the last minute in Abuja Stadium in front of 60,000. It took only one point to qualify before the 83rd minute defeat in Mozambique to leave the place for Nigeria,[10][11] Coelho was sacked immediately and coach Faouzi Benzarti was hired to oversee the team at the 2010 African Cup; he too was sacked after Tunisia were eliminated from the group stage, drawing all three of their matches against Gabon, Cameroon, and Zambia finishing in the bottom of the group.

 
Coaching staff of Tunisia during the 2010 African Cup led by Faouzi Benzarti.

In June 2010, Bertrand Marchand was appointed manager on a two-year contract, with the goal of reaching the semifinals of the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations especially after the excellent results he achieved with ES Sahel at the African and international level. However, qualification started badly, with two defeats against Botswana[12][13] and a 2–2[14] draw against Malawi bringing the Tunisian team to 65th place in the FIFA rankings, the worst in its history. Marchand was sacked in December, only six months into his two-year term.

 
Tunisia-Gabon on 17 January 2010 for 2010 African Cup.

The beginning of 2011 saw tough political events in Tunisia. Against this turbulent backdrop, and with little preparation under new coach Sami Trabelsi, the team surprisingly won the 2011 African Nations Championship, following wins against Senegal,[15] Angola[16] and Rwanda[17] in the first round as well as DR Congo[18] and Algeria[19] in the playoffs and defeating Angola 3–0[20] in the final making the federation extend the Trabelsi's contract. Tunisia went on to qualify for the 2012 African Cup of Nations and managed to qualify for the next round after beating Morocco[21] and Niger[22] and defeat from Gabon[23] but an extra-time defeat to Ghana knocked them out in the quarter-finals yet again.[24] Tunisia fared even worse in the following tournament which the qualification was difficult against Sierra Leone,[25][26] falling in the group stages after a big defeat against Côte d'Ivoire 3–0[27] in addition to the draw with Togo[28] despite a 1–0 win over Algeria[29] in which Youssef Msakni scored what was later voted the goal of the tournament.

In February 2013, Sami Trabelsi was replaced by Nabil Maâloul. Under Maâloul, the results worsened because Tunisia failed to make the World Cup qualification playoffs after a 2–0 defeat to Cape Verde national football team although the results of the World Cup qualifiers were good initially by beating Equatorial Guinea[30][31] and Sierra Leone,[32][33] but Cape Verde were found to have fielded an ineligible player and Tunisia were awarded a 3–0 victory,[34] putting them through to the playoffs. With Maâloul having already resigned, the Dutch coach Ruud Krol took over for the two-leg playoff, but Tunisia lost 4–1[35][36] to Cameroon and Krol himself then resigned let the Tunisian team go in a bad way.

Back to improvement (2014–)Edit

 
Maâloul qualified the team to the 2018 World Cup.

Belgian coach Georges Leekens was appointed in early 2014 to try and revive the team's fortunes. Early results were positive, including a (1–1)[37] draw against Colombia and a 1–0 win over South Korea,[38] both in friendly matches. Under Leekens, the team climbed from 49th to 22nd in few months in the FIFA rankings so the team regained its continental luster after the emergence of a new generation of players. Tunisia qualified for the 2015 African Cup of Nations and finished top of their strong group including Senegal,[39][40] Egypt[41][42] and Botswana.[43][44] At the finals of the tournament, Tunisia finished top of their group for the first time since 2008 winning Zambia 2–1[45] and drawing with Cape Verde[46] and DR Congo[47] with the same result 1-1 but were eliminated in the quarter-finals after a controversial 2–1[48] defeat to the host Equatorial Guinea making CAF banned the referee Rajindraparsad Seechurn for six months for his "poor performance" at the tournament. In June 2015, Leekens resigned surprisingly 2015 for security reasons after he restored the glamor of the team. In July 2015, Henryk Kasperczak returned as coach after 17 years. He managed to qualify the team for the 2017 African Cup in the lead with victory over Liberia,[49][50] Togo[51][52] and Djibouti.[53][54]

 
Tunisia at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

He reached also the quarter-finals of the competition after beating Algeria[55] and Zimbabwe[56] 4-2 before losing again in this round, this time against Burkina Faso 2–0.[57] The defeats in friendly matches against Cameroon[58] and Morocco[59] with the same result 1–0 led to the dismissal of Kasperczak. On 27 April 2017, Nabil Maâloul returned as coach despite the disapproval of the Tunisian supporters following the failure at the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, but this time he qualified Tunisia for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia for the fifth time in the history of Tunisia and the first since 12 years after winning against DR Congo,[60][61] Guinea[62][63] and Libya[64][65] in the qualification. Tunisia's qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup and its positive results in the friendlies against Iran[66] and Costa Rica[67] led to its rise to 14th place in the FIFA World Rankings for the first time ever, after being first in African teams and surpassing teams like Italy and Netherlands. The team also continued its good results before the World Cup, with a draw with Turkey[68] and Portugal,[69] with the same score 2–2, in addition to a difficult defeat against Spain 1–0 in the 85th minute.[70] Despite this, in the World Cup, the performance of the team did not rise to the expected level, and was once again eliminated from the group stage after losing 1–2 against England because of Harry Kane's goal in the last minute[71] and a complete 2–5 thrash against Belgium,[72] before winning the last game 2–1 against Panama,[73] the first World Cup win for Tunisia since beating Mexico 3–1 in 1978. Thus, all the wins of Tunisia in the World Cup were against the CONCACAF teams. Because of this dismal performance, Tunisian squad was heavily criticized for its unpromising performance and the team's dubious record in World Cup, and fell out of top 20 teams on FIFA ranking.

The team went through a short experience with Faouzi Benzarti, who managed to qualify for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations surpassing Egypt,[74][75] Niger[76][77] and Eswatini[78][79] before being fired due to problems between him and the president of the Tunisian Football Federation Wadii Jarii.

In December 2018, French coach Alain Giresse was hired to oversee the team at the 2019 AFCON finals due to his experience in African football and his outstanding record as a player with the French national team. The start of the competition was poor after three draws in the group stage against Angola 1–1[80] and Mali in the same result 1–1[81] before a 0–0[82] draw against Mauritania to qualify for the Round 16 with great difficulty in second place. In the next round, the results improved by beating Ghana on penalties,[83] to qualify for the quarter-finals and also beat the surprise of the tournament Madagascar 3–0[84] to qualify for the semi-finals for the first time in 15 years when Tunisia won the AFCON in 2004 before they narrowly lost to Senegal 1–0[85] in extra time after a referee dispute of Bamlak Tessema because of not giving a clear penalty to Tunisia 4 minutes before the end of the game to complete the competition in fourth place behind Nigeria.[86] Nonetheless, it stands as the best performance of Tunisia since winning 2004 AFCON at home.

Alain Giresse was abandoned despite achieving the goal stipulated in the contract, so the Tunisian coach Mondher Kebaier was called in on 27 August 2019 to supervise the team.

Competitive recordEdit

     Champions       Runners-up       Third place       Fourth place

  • Red border color indicates tournament was held on home soil.

FIFA World Cup recordEdit

FIFA World Cup record FIFA World Cup Qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D* L GF GA Squad Pld W D L GF GA Ref
  1930 Part of   France Part of   France
  1934
  1938
  1950
  1954
  1958 Did not enter Did not enter
  1962 Did not qualify 3 1 1 1 4 4 [87]
  1966 Withdrew Withdrew
  1970 Did not qualify 5 1 4 0 4 3 [88]
  1974 4 1 1 2 5 5 [89]
  1978 Round 1 9th 3 1 1 1 3 2 Squad 10 4 4 2 15 9 [90]
  1982 Did not qualify 2 1 0 1 2 2 [91]
  1986 8 4 0 4 11 9 [92]
  1990 10 4 1 5 10 11 [93]
  1994 6 3 3 0 14 2 [94]
  1998 Group stage 26th 3 0 1 2 1 4 Squad 8 7 1 0 15 2 [95]
    2002 Group stage 29th 3 0 1 2 1 5 Squad 10 8 2 0 28 5 [96]
  2006 Group stage 24th 3 0 1 2 3 6 Squad 10 6 3 1 25 9 [97]
  2010 Did not qualify 12 7 3 2 18 7 [98]
  2014 8 4 3 1 14 10 [99]
  2018 Group stage 24th 3 1 0 2 5 8 Squad 8 6 2 0 15 6 [100]
  2022 To be determined To be determined
      2026
Total Group stage 5/23 15 2 4 9 13 25 104 57 28 19 180 84
 
A Tunisair plane supporting the Eagles in the 2006 World Cup.
 
The plane that took the Tunisian team players to Russia for the 2018 World Cup.
 
Map showing participations of Tunisia in the World Cup:

FIFA Confederations CupEdit

FIFA Confederations Cup record
Appearances : 1
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Squad Ref
  1992 Did not qualify
  1995
  1997
  1999
    2001
  2003
  2005 Group stage 6th 3 1 0 2 3 5 Squad [101]
  2009 Did not qualify
  2013
  2017
Total Group stage 1/10 3 1 0 2 3 5

Africa Cup of Nations recordEdit

 
Tunisia-Ivory Coast.

Tunisia participated in the Africa Cup for the first time in 1962. In that year the country came in third by beating Uganda in the consolation final with 3–0. That tournament, however, only 4 countries took part in the tournament. In 1965 Tunisia was allowed to act as host country and made it to the final. The final was lost to Ghana with 2–3.

Only then did it reach the final again in 1996 and again this time the home country, South Africa, was lost with 0–2. The biggest success in this tournament came 8 years later when Tunisia in its own country reached the final for the third time and this time won. Morocco was defeated in the final with 2–1. Francileudo Dos Santos Silva and Ziad Jaziri scored the goals for Tunisia.

Africa Cup of Nations record Africa Cup of Nations qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D* L GF GA Squad Pld W D L GF GA Ref
  1957 Not affiliated to CAF Not affiliated to CAF
  1959
  1962 Third place 3rd 2 1 0 1 5 4 Squad 4 3 0 1 7 2 [102]
  1963 Group stage 5th 2 0 1 1 3 5 Squad 2 1 0 1 6 5 [103]
  1965 Runners-up 2nd 3 1 1 1 6 3 Squad Qualified as hosts [104]
  1968 Did not qualify 4 1 1 2 5 5
  1970 Did not enter Did not enter
  1972
  1974
  1976 Did not qualify 6 3 1 2 8 7 [105]
  1978 Fourth place 4th 5 1 3 1 5 4 Squad 4 2 1 1 10 7 [106]
  1980 Withdrew Banned
  1982 Group stage 7th 3 0 1 2 1 4 Squad 2 1 1 0 1 0 [107]
  1984 Did not qualify 4 2 1 1 6 1 [108]
  1986 2 1 0 1 1 2 [109]
  1988 2 0 1 1 1 2 [110]
  1990 2 0 0 2 0 4 [111]
  1992 6 3 3 0 10 5 [112]
  1994 Group stage 9th 2 0 1 1 1 3 Squad Qualified as hosts [113]
  1996 Runners-up 2nd 6 2 2 2 10 9 Squad 8 3 4 1 7 2 [114]
  1998 Quarter-finals 5th 4 2 1 1 6 5 Squad 3 2 0 1 3 1 [115]
    2000 Fourth place 4th 6 2 2 2 6 9 Squad 6 5 0 1 13 3 [116]
  2002 Group stage 11th 3 0 2 1 0 1 Squad 6 2 2 2 9 7 [117]
  2004 Champions 1st 6 4 2 0 10 4 Squad Qualified as hosts [118]
  2006 Quarter-finals 6th 4 2 1 1 7 5 Squad 10 6 3 1 25 9 [119]
  2008 Quarter-finals 5th 4 1 2 1 7 6 Squad 6 4 1 1 12 3 [120]
  2010 Group stage 12th 3 0 3 0 3 3 Squad 12 7 3 2 18 7 [121]
   2012 Quarter-finals 6th 4 2 0 2 5 5 Squad 8 4 2 2 14 6 [122]
  2013 Group stage 12th 3 1 1 1 2 4 Squad 2 0 2 0 2 2 [123]
  2015 Quarter-finals 7th 4 1 2 1 5 5 Squad 6 4 2 0 6 2 [124]
  2017 Quarter-finals 8th 4 2 0 2 6 7 Squad 6 4 1 1 16 3 [125]
  2019 Fourth place 4th 7 1 4 2 6 5 Squad 6 4 1 1 16 3 [126]
  2021 In progress 2 2 0 0 5 1
  2023 To be determined To be determined
  2025
Total 1 Title 19/32 75 23 29 23 94 91 117 64 29 24 191 87

Olympic Games recordEdit

Summer Olympics
Appearances: 4
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
  1896 Part of   France
  1900
  1904
  1908
  1912
  1920
  1924
  1928
  1936
  1948
  1952
  1956 Did not enter
  1960 Group Stage 15th 3 0 0 3 3 11
  1964 Did not qualify
  1968
  1972
  1976
  1980
  1984
  1988 Group Stage 13th 3 0 2 1 3 6
  1992 Did not qualify
  1996 Group Stage 14th 3 0 1 2 1 5
  2000 Did not qualify
  2004 Group Stage 12th 3 1 1 1 4 5
  2008 Did not qualify
  2012
  2016
  2020
  2024 To be determined
  2028
Total Group Stage 4/15 12 1 4 7 11 27

African Nations Championship recordEdit

African Nations Championship African Nations Championship qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Squad Pld W D L GF GA
  2009 Did not qualify 2 0 2 0 2 2
  2011 Champions 1st 6 4 2 0 11 3 Squad 2 0 2 0 3 3
  2014 Did not qualify 2 0 1 1 0 1
  2016 Quarter-finals 8th 4 1 2 1 9 5 Squad 4 1 1 2 4 5
  2018 Did not compete Did not compete
  2020 Withdrew after qualifying 2 2 0 0 3 1
  2022 To be determined To be determined
Total Champions 1/2 10 5 4 1 20 8 10 1 6 3 9 11

Other recordsEdit

Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Competition
  1957 Runners-up 2nd 5 3 0 2 14 13 Pan Arab Games
  1963 Champions 1st 4 4 0 0 11 1 Arab Nations Cup
  1963 Runners-up 2nd 6 4 1 0 4 9 Friendship Games
  1963 Group stage 6th 3 1 0 2 3 4 Mediterranean Games
  1965 Champions 1st 3 2 1 0 4 2 Tripoli Tournament
  1966 Fourth Place 4th 3 0 1 2 0 3 Tripoli Tournament
  1967 Group stage 5th 3 1 1 1 4 3 Mediterranean Games
  1971 Runners-up 2nd 4 2 1 1 3 2 Mediterranean Games
  1973 Champions 1st 6 6 0 0 19 3 Palestine Cup of Nations
  1974 Group stage 6th 2 0 1 1 0 2 Iran International Tournament
  1974 Third Place 3rd 7 4 0 3 10 9 Kuneitra Cup
  1975 Third Place 3rd 5 1 3 1 5 5 Mediterranean Games
  1975 Group stage 5th 2 1 1 0 4 1 Palestine Cup of Nations
  1979 Group stage 7th 3 0 1 2 2 4 Mediterranean Games
  1983 Group stage 7th 2 1 0 1 4 5 Mediterranean Games
  1984–85 Third Place 3rd 2 1 0 2 2 6 Friendship Games
  1985 Group stage 5th 3 2 1 0 7 2 Pan Arab Games
  1987 Group stage 8th 4 0 0 4 1 8 African Games
  1988 Group stage 7th 4 0 3 1 3 4 Arab Nations Cup
  1988 Fourth Place 4th 3 0 0 3 1 10 Malta International Tournament
  1991 Group stage 7th 2 1 0 1 1 5 Mediterranean Games
  1991 Runners-up 2nd 5 3 1 1 7 2 African Games
  1991 Champions 1st 2 2 0 0 11 3 7th November Cup
  1993 Group stage 7th 3 1 0 2 2 5 Mediterranean Games
  1993 Champions 1st 2 2 0 0 6 1 7th November Cup
  1994 Third Place 3rd 3 0 2 1 2 5 Malta International Tournament
  1995 Champions 1st 2 2 0 0 4 1 7th November Cup
  1997 Champions 1st 2 2 0 0 5 1 LG Cup
  2001 Champions 1st 4 3 0 1 7 1 Mediterranean Games
  2003 Champions 1st 2 1 1 0 3 2 Tunis Four Nations Tournament
  2005 Quarter-finals 7th 3 0 3 0 4 4 Mediterranean Games
  2006 Runners-up 2nd 2 1 1 0 3 0 LG Cup
  2007 Third Place 3rd 5 2 2 1 4 3 African Games
  2009 Group stage 7th 4 2 1 1 6 5 Mediterranean Games
  2011 Champions 1st 1 0 1 0 0 0 Catalonia International Trophy
  2013 Third Place 3rd 5 3 1 1 10 5 Mediterranean Games
  2015 Runners-up 2nd 1 0 0 1 0 2 Kirin Challenge Cup
  2016 Champions 1st 1 0 1 0 3 3 Catalonia International Trophy
  2021 Qualified Pan-Arab tournament
Total Champions 1st 123 58 29 36 177 144 11 Titles

HonoursEdit

This is a list of honours for the senior Tunisia national team

AwardsEdit

African National Team of the Year

  •   1995, 1999, 2004, 2005
  •   1996, 1997

Coaching staffEdit

Position Name
Head Coach   Mondher Kebaier
Assistant Coach   Adel Sellimi
Goalkeeping Coach   Adel Zouita
Fitness Coach   Hichem Ghzia
  Mohamed Tounsi
Team Doctor   Souheil Chemli

List of managersEdit

Manager Nat Period Pld Won Drawn Lost Win% Results
Rachid Turki   1956–1957 0 0 0 0 0.00%
Hechmi Cherif
Larbi Soudani
Habib Draoua
 
 
 
1957–1960 15 7 2 6 46.67%
Milan Kristić   1960–1961 23 5 4 14 21.74%   1960 Olympic Games – Group stage
  1962 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Frane Matošić   1961–1962 6 1 2 3 16.67%   CAN 1962 – Third place
André Gérard   1963–1965 34 15 9 10 44.12%   CAN 1963 – Group stage
  1963 Arab Nations CupChampions
Mokhtar Ben Nacef   1965–1968 15 5 8 2 33.33%   CAN 1965 – Runners-up
  CAN 1968 – Failed to qualify
Radojica Radojičić   1968–1970 9 2 3 4 22.22%
Sereta Begović   1969 5 0 4 1 0.00%   1970 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Ameur Hizem (1)   1970–1974 33 16 6 11 48.48%   1974 World Cup – Failed to qualify
André Nagy   1974–1975 10 4 1 5 40.00%
Abdelmajid Chetali   1975–1978 52 18 18 16 34.61%   CAN 1976 – Failed to qualify
  CAN 1978 – Fourth Place
  1978 World Cup – Group stage
Ameur Hizem (2)   1978–1979 3 1 1 1 33.33%
Hmid Dhib   1979–1980 14 3 3 5 21.43%   1982 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Ryszard Kulesza   1981–1983 25 10 5 10 40.00%   CAN 1982 – Group stage
  CAN 1984 – Failed to qualify
Youssef Zouaoui (1)   1984–1986 26 13 3 8 54.16%   CAN 1986 – Failed to qualify
  1986 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Jean Vincent   1986–1987 10 1 2 7 10.00%   CAN 1988 – Failed to qualify
Taoufik Ben Othman   1987–1988 16 4 3 9 25.00%
Antoni Piechniczek (1)   1988 9 3 3 3 33.33%   1988 Olympic Games – Group stage
Mokhtar Tlili   1988–1989 14 3 4 7 21.43%   CAN 1990 – Failed to qualify
Antoni Piechniczek (2)   1989 8 2 2 4 25.00%   1990 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Mrad Mahjoub   1990–1993 26 8 13 5 30.77%   CAN 1992 – Failed to qualify
  1994 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Youssef Zouaoui (2)   1993–1994 13 4 6 3 30.77%
Faouzi Benzarti (1)   1994 1 0 1 0 0.00%   CAN 1994 – Group stage
Henryk Kasperczak (1)   1994–1998 59 30 11 18 50.84%   CAN 1996 – Runners-up
  1996 Olympic Games – Group stage
  CAN 1998 – Quarterfinals
  1998 World Cup – Group stage
Francesco Scoglio   1998–2001 32 19 8 5 59.73%   CAN 2000 – Fourth Place
Eckhard Krautzun   2001 7 4 2 1 57.14%   2002 World Cup – Group stage
Henri Michel   2001–2002 6 2 2 2 33.33%   CAN 2002 – Group stage
Ammar Souayah   2002 6 0 3 3 0.00%
Roger Lemerre   2002–2008 67 40 15 12 59.70%   CAN 2004Champions
  2005 Confederations Cup – Group stage
  CAN 2006  – Quarterfinals
  2006 World Cup – Group stage
  CAN 2008 – Quarterfinals
Humberto Coelho   2008–2009 15 5 4 3 33.33%   CHAN 2009 – Failed to qualify
  2010 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Faouzi Benzarti (2)   2009–2010 4 0 3 1 0.00%   CAN 2010 – Group stage
Bertrand Marchand   2010 6 3 1 2 50.00%
Sami Trabelsi   2010–2013 32 13 9 10 40.63%   CHAN 2011Champions
  CAN 2012 – Quarterfinals
  CAN 2013 – Group stage
Nabil Maâloul (1)   2013 7 2 3 2 28.57%   CHAN 2014 – Failed to qualify
Ruud Krol   2013 2 0 1 1 0.00%   2014 World Cup – Failed to qualify
Georges Leekens   2014–2015 19 7 8 4 36.84%   CAN 2015 – Quarterfinals
Henryk Kasperczak (2)   2015–2017 26 12 5 10 46.15%   CHAN 2016 – Quarterfinals
  CAN 2017 – Quarterfinals
Nabil Maâloul (2)   2017–2018 13 6 4 3 46.15%   2018 World Cup – Group stage
Faouzi Benzarti (3)   2018 3 3 0 0 100.00%
Alain Giresse   2018–2019 12 5 4 3 41.67%   CAN 2019 – Fourth Place
Mondher Kebaier   2019– 5 3 1 1 60.00%   CHAN 2020 – Withdrew after qualifying

Coaches StatisticsEdit

Coach Statistics
First coach   Rachid Turki 1956
Longest period   Roger Lemerre 5 years, 280 days
Shortest period   Faouzi Benzarti (1) 4 days
Most matches   Roger Lemerre 67 matches
Less matches   Faouzi Benzarti (1) 1 match
Most wins   Roger Lemerre 40 wins
Most defeats   Henryk Kasperczak (1) 18 defeats
Highest win%   Faouzi Benzarti (3) 100.00%
Lowest win%   Sereta Begović
  Ammar Souayah
  Faouzi Benzarti (1&2)
  Ruud Krol
0.00%

Results and fixturesEdit

This is a list of matches from the last twelve months and any future scheduled matches.

  Win   Draw   Loss   Postponed

2019Edit

24 June 2019 2019 AFCON GSTunisia  1–1  AngolaSuez, Egypt
19:00 (CAT)
Report
Stadium: Suez Stadium
Attendance: 7,345
Referee: Bamlak Tessema Weyesa (Ethiopia)
28 June 2019 2019 AFCON GSTunisia  1–1  MaliSuez, Egypt
16:30 (CAT)
Report
Stadium: Suez Stadium
Attendance: 8,085
Referee: Joshua Bondo (Botswana)
2 July 2019 2019 AFCON GSMauritania  0–0  TunisiaSuez, Egypt
21:00 (CAT) Report Stadium: Suez Stadium
Referee: Louis Hakizimana (Rwanda)
8 July 2019 2019 AFCON R16Ghana  1–1 (a.e.t.)
(4–5 p)
  TunisiaIsmailia, Egypt
21:00 (CAT)
Report
Stadium: Ismailia Stadium
Attendance: 8,890
Referee: Victor Gomes (South Africa)
Penalties
11 July 2019 2019 AFCON QFMadagascar  0–3  TunisiaCairo, Egypt
21:00 (CAT) Report
Stadium: Al Salam Stadium
Referee: Sidi Alioum (Cameroon)
14 July 2019 2019 AFCON SFSenegal  1–0 (a.e.t.)  TunisiaCairo, Egypt
18:00 (CAT)
Report Stadium: 30 June Stadium
Referee: Bamlak Tessema Weyesa (Ethiopia)
17 July 2019 2019 AFCON 3rdTunisia  0–1  NigeriaCairo, Egypt
21:00 (CAT) Report
Stadium: Al Salam Stadium
Referee: Gehad Grisha (Egypt)
6 September 2019 FriendlyTunisia  1–0  MauritaniaRadès, Tunisia
18:15 (UTC±0)
Report Stadium: Stade Olympique de Radès
Attendance: 12,000
Referee: Ibrahim Nour El Din (Egypt)
10 September 2019 FriendlyTunisia  1–2  Ivory CoastRouen, France
20:00 (UTC±0)
Report
Stadium: Stade Robert Diochon
Attendance: 3,000
Referee: Karim Abed (France)
12 October 2019 FriendlyTunisia  0–0  CameroonRadès, Tunisia
17:00 (UTC±0) Report Stadium: Stade Olympique de Radès
Referee: Nabil Boukhalfa (Algeria)
15 November 2019 2021 AFCONQTunisia  4–1  LibyaRadès, Tunisia
20:00 UTC+1
Report
Stadium: Stade Olympique de Radès
Referee: Mahmoud El Banna (Egypt)
19 November 2019 2021 AFCONQEquatorial Guinea  0–1  TunisiaMalabo, Equatorial Guinea
20:00 UTC+1 Report
Stadium: Estadio de Malabo
Referee: Mohamed Othmani (Comoros)

2020Edit

TBD 2021 AFCONQTunisia  v  TanzaniaRadès, Tunisia
--:-- UTC+2 Stadium: Stade Olympique de Radès
TBD 2021 AFCONQTanzania  v  TunisiaDar es Salaam, Tanzania
--:-- UTC+3 Stadium: National Stadium
TBD 2021 AFCONQLibya  v  TunisiaTBD
--:-- UTC+2
TBD 2021 AFCONQTunisia  v  Equatorial GuineaTunisia
--:-- UTC+2
TBD 2022 WCQTunisia  v  ZambiaTunisia
--:-- UTC+2
TBD 2022 WCQZambia  v  TunisiaZimbabwe
--:-- UTC+2
TBD 2022 WCQTunisia  v  MauritaniaTunisia
--:-- UTC+2
TBD 2022 WCQMauritania  v  TunisiaMauritania
--:-- UTC+1
TBD 2022 WCQTunisia  v  Equatorial GuineaTunisia
--:-- UTC+2
TBD 2022 WCQEquatorial Guinea  v  TunisiaMauritania
--:-- UTC+1

Current team statusEdit

2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualificationEdit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification        
1   Tunisia 2 2 0 0 5 1 +4 6 Qualify for final tournament 4–1 TBD TBD
2   Libya 2 1 0 1 3 5 −2 3 TBD 2–1 TBD
3   Tanzania 2 1 0 1 3 3 0 3 TBD TBD 2–1
4   Equatorial Guinea 2 0 0 2 1 3 −2 0 0–1 TBD TBD
Updated to match(es) played on 19 November 2019. Source: CAF

2022 FIFA World Cup qualificationEdit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification        
1   Tunisia 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Advance to third round TBD TBD TBD
2   Zambia 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 TBD TBD TBD
3   Mauritania 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 TBD TBD TBD
4   Equatorial Guinea 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 TBD TBD TBD
First match(es) will be played on 5 October 2020. Source: FIFA

PlayersEdit

Current squadEdit

The following players were called up for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification matches against Libya and Equatorial Guinea played on 15 and 19 November 2019.[127]
Caps and goals updated as of 19 November 2019 after the match against Equatorial Guinea.[128] Only official FIFA matches are included.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1GK Farouk Ben Mustapha (1989-07-01) 1 July 1989 (age 31) 30 0   Al-Shabab
1GK Moez Ben Cherifia (1991-06-24) 24 June 1991 (age 29) 20 0   Espérance
1GK Aymen Dahmen (1997-01-28) 28 January 1997 (age 23) 0 0   Sfax

2DF Ali Maâloul (1990-01-01) 1 January 1990 (age 30) 59 0   Al Ahly
2DF Aymen Abdennour (1989-08-06) 6 August 1989 (age 31) 54 2   Kayserispor
2DF Yassine Meriah (1993-07-02) 2 July 1993 (age 27) 42 3   Kasımpaşa
2DF Oussama Haddadi (1992-01-28) 28 January 1992 (age 28) 24 0   Kasımpaşa
2DF Hamdi Nagguez (1992-10-28) 28 October 1992 (age 27) 21 0   Suduva
2DF Dylan Bronn (1995-06-19) 19 June 1995 (age 25) 20 1   Metz
2DF Mohamed Dräger (1996-06-25) 25 June 1996 (age 24) 13 0   Paderborn 07
2DF Wajdi Kechrida (1995-11-05) 5 November 1995 (age 24) 10 0   Étoile du Sahel
2DF Saddam Ben Aziza (1991-02-08) 8 February 1991 (age 29) 4 0   Étoile du Sahel

3MF Ferjani Sassi (1992-03-18) 18 March 1992 (age 28) 56 5   Zamalek
3MF Naïm Sliti (1992-07-27) 27 July 1992 (age 28) 41 11   Al-Ettifaq
3MF Ellyes Skhiri (1995-05-10) 10 May 1995 (age 25) 28 0   Köln
3MF Anice Badri (1990-09-18) 18 September 1990 (age 29) 27 8   Al-Ittihad
3MF Ghailene Chaalali (1994-02-28) 28 February 1994 (age 26) 18 1   Yeni Malatyaspor
3MF Saîf-Eddine Khaoui (1995-04-27) 27 April 1995 (age 25) 14 2   Marseille
3MF Ayman Ben Mohamed (1994-12-08) 8 December 1994 (age 25) 12 0   Le Havre
3MF Saad Bguir (1994-03-22) 22 March 1994 (age 26) 11 5   Abha
3MF Mohamed Ali Ben Romdhane (1999-09-06) 6 September 1999 (age 20) 3 0   Espérance
3MF Hamza Rafia (1999-04-22) 22 April 1999 (age 21) 3 0   Juventus U23

4FW Youssef Msakni (1990-10-28) 28 October 1990 (age 29) 61 11   Al-Duhail
4FW Wahbi Khazri (1991-02-08) 8 February 1991 (age 29) 52 19   Saint-Étienne
4FW Taha Yassine Khenissi (1992-01-06) 6 January 1992 (age 28) 41 8   Espérance

Recent call-upsEdit

The following players have been called up to the squad within the last 12 months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Atef Dkhili (1990-04-04) 4 April 1990 (age 30) 0 0   Club Africain v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
GK Ghaith Yeferni (1998-05-20) 20 May 1998 (age 22) 0 0   USBG v.   Libya, 21 September 2019 CHAN
GK Mouez Hassen (1995-03-05) 5 March 1995 (age 25) 12 0   Cercle Brugge v.   Ivory Coast, 10 September 2019

DF Hamza Mathlouthi (1992-07-25) 25 July 1992 (age 28) 28 0   Sfaxien v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
DF Zied Boughattas (1990-12-05) 5 December 1990 (age 29) 11 0   Étoile du Sahel v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
DF Ghazi Abderrazzak (1986-10-16) 16 October 1986 (age 33) 0 0   Club Africain v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
DF Hani Amamou (1997-09-16) 16 September 1997 (age 22) 0 0   Sfax v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
DF Fakhreddine Jaziri (1989-01-25) 25 January 1989 (age 31) 0 0   Club Africain v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
DF Chamseddine Dhaouadi (1987-01-16) 16 January 1987 (age 33) 10 0   Espérance v.   Libya, 21 September 2019 CHAN
DF Rami Bedoui (1990-01-19) 19 January 1990 (age 30) 18 0   Liepāja v.   Ivory Coast, 10 September 2019

MF Maher Hannachi (1984-08-31) 31 August 1984 (age 35) 7 1   Étoile du Sahel v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Malek Baayou (1999-04-29) 29 April 1999 (age 21) 2 0   Étoile du Sahel v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Firas Ben Larbi (1996-05-27) 27 May 1996 (age 24) 2 0   Étoile du Sahel v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Mortadha Ben Ouanès (1994-07-02) 2 July 1994 (age 26) 2 0   Étoile du Sahel v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Hamza Jelassi (1991-09-29) 29 September 1991 (age 28) 2 0   Sfax v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Elyès Jlassi (1994-02-07) 7 February 1994 (age 26) 2 0   Monastir v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Habib Oueslati (1997-08-10) 10 August 1997 (age 22) 1 0   Sfax v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Fedi Ben Choug (1995-03-12) 12 March 1995 (age 25) 0 0   Espérance v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Wajdi Sehli (1997-04-17) 17 April 1997 (age 23) 0 0   Club Africain v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
MF Bassem Srarfi (1997-06-25) 25 June 1997 (age 23) 15 1   Zulte Waregem v.   Cameroon, 12 October 2019
MF Marc Lamti (2001-01-28) 28 January 2001 (age 19) 2 0   Bayer Leverkusen v.   Cameroon, 12 October 2019
MF Mohamed Ali Moncer (1991-04-28) 28 April 1991 (age 29) 18 3   Sfaxien v.   Libya, 21 September 2019 CHAN
MF Ahmed Khalil (1994-12-21) 21 December 1994 (age 25) 6 0   Club Africain v.   Libya, 21 September 2019 CHAN
MF Alaeddine Marzouki (1990-01-03) 3 January 1990 (age 30) 1 0   Sfax v.   Libya, 21 September 2019 CHAN
MF Houssem Habbassi (1996-01-01) 1 January 1996 (age 24) 0 0   CAB v.   Libya, 21 September 2019 CHAN
MF Bilel Saidani (1993-06-29) 29 June 1993 (age 27) 3 0   Damac v.   Ivory Coast, 10 September 2019
MF Salim Khelifi (1997-06-25) 25 June 1997 (age 23) 2 0   Holstein Kiel v.   Ivory Coast, 10 September 2019
MF Jeremy Dudziak (1995-08-28) 28 August 1995 (age 24) 1 0   Hamburg v.   Ivory Coast, 10 September 2019

FW Yassine Chamakhi (1995-02-27) 27 February 1995 (age 25) 1 0   Club Africain v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
FW Hazem Haj Hassen (1996-02-15) 15 February 1996 (age 24) 1 0   Étoile du Sahel v.   Libya, 20 October 2019 CHAN
FW Firas Chaouat (1996-05-08) 8 May 1996 (age 24) 10 2   Abha v.   Cameroon, 12 October 2019
FW Amor Layouni (1992-10-03) 3 October 1992 (age 27) 3 1   Pyramids v.   Cameroon, 12 October 2019
FW Adel Bettaieb (1997-01-28) 28 January 1997 (age 23) 0 0   F91 Dudelange v.   Cameroon, 12 October 2019

INJ Player withdrew from the squad due to an injury.
PRE Preliminary squad.
SUS Player is serving a suspension.
WD Player withdrew for personal reasons.

RecordsEdit

All-time record against FIFA recognized nationsEdit

Key
  Positive balance
  Neutral balance
  Negative balance

The list shown below shows the Tunisia national football team all-time international record against opposing nations.

 
Map of teams played against Tunisia by number of matches:

FIFA rankingsEdit

Below is a chart of Tunisia FIFA ranking from 1993 till now.

Tunisia's FIFA world rankings
Rank Year Statics Best Worst
Games Wins Draws Loses Rank Move Rank Move
24 2018 8 3 2 3 14   9 (April) 24   7 (June)
27 2017 13 6 2 5 27   7 (July) 42   5 (April)
35 2016 11 6 4 1 34   4 (October) 48   8 (February)
40 2015 15 5 5 5 22   2 (June) 41   5 (April)
22 2014 9 5 3 1 22   11 (September) 49   5 (April)
48 2013 15 4 7 4 41   11 (February) 53   8 (June)
45 2012 16 8 4 4 41   10 (June) 59   4 (October)
59 2011 8 4 2 2 44   3 (March) 61   15 (April)
45 2010 11 3 5 3 44   11 (October) 65   10 (July)
53 2009 10 4 4 2 45   2 (July) 54   8 (February)
46 2008 16 7 5 4 44   3 (April) 56   7 (February)
47 2007 9 5 3 1 32   5 (July) 47   13 (February)
32 2006 16 7 4 5 21   5 (February) 32   10 (July)
28 2005 12 8 2 2 23   8 (September) 40   4 (October)
35 2004 16 8 4 4 31   14 (February) 45   2 (April)
45 2003 9 5 3 1 40   3 (April) 46   3 (October)
41 2002 14 0 8 6 28   0 (June) 41   5 (July)
28 2001 12 8 2 2 22   7 (July) 32   5 (April)
26 2000 17 8 7 2 25   3 (June) 28   1 (September)
31 1999 10 7 1 2 26   4 (November) 33   7 (June)
21 1998 17 7 4 6 19   6 (November) 26   4 (July)
23 1997 14 9 2 3 20   7 (August) 29   4 (June)
23 1996 14 7 2 5 21   6 (February) 31   9 (June)
22 1995 14 7 3 4 21   6 (February) 27   4 (August)
30 1994 10 3 5 2 27   4 (September) 33   3 (October)
32 1993 10 6 3 1 31   7 (August) 36   3 (September)

Most capped playersEdit

 
Sadok Sassi is the most capped player in the history of Tunisia with 116 caps.
Most Caps[129]
# Player Caps Goals Career
1 Sadok Sassi 116 0 1963–1978
2 Radhi Jaïdi 105 7 1996–2009
3 Khaled Badra 97 12 1995–2006
4 Khaled Ben Yahia 95 5 1979–1993
Kaies Ghodhbane 95 6 1995–2006
6 Chokri El Ouaer 93 0 1993–2002
7 Riadh Bouazizi 92 3 1995–2006
8 Tarak Dhiab 89 12 1974–1990
9 Mohamed Ali Mahjoubi 86 17 1985–1995
Sirajeddine Chihi 86 4 1991–2001

Players in bold are still active.

Top goalscorersEdit

 
Wahbi Khazri is the top scorer among active players with 19 goals.
Top Goalscorers[129]
# Player Goals Caps Career
1 Issam Jemâa 36 83 2005–2014
2 Francileudo Santos 22 40 2004–2008
3 Adel Sellimi 20 71 1991–2002
4 Ezzedine Chakroun 19 42 1968-1975
Wahbi Khazri 19 53 2013-
6 Mohamed Salah Jedidi 18 40 1985–1995
Faouzi Rouissi 18 42 1989-2001
8 Mohamed Ali Mahjoubi 17 86 1985–1995
9 Hassan Gabsi 16 51 1997–2002
Zoubeir Baya 16 71 1994-2002

Players in bold are still active.

Home stadiumEdit

 
The 7 November Stadium in Radès the home stadium of Tunisia national team.

After the independence of Tunisia in 1956, the Tunisian national stadium was Stade Chedly Zouiten which has a capacity of 18,000 and hosted all the matches of the Tunisian team. It hosted also the 1965 and 1994 African Cup of Nations and the 1977 FIFA World Youth Championship before it was replaced after the construction of Stade El Menzah (45,000) in 1967 for the 1967 Mediterranean Games. Tunisia's first match at the stadium was played on 8 September 1967 against Libya. Tunisia won the match 3–0. This stadium became the new stronghold of the Eagles of Carthage. It hosted the 1977 FIFA World Youth Championship and was completely renovated for the 1994 African Cup of Nations. It hosted also the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations. In 2001, the Stade 7 November was inaugurated as Tunisia's national stadium ahead of the 2001 Mediterranean Games. Located in Radès, the stadium has an all-seater capacity of 60,000. The first match at the stadium was played on 7 July 2001 against between Étoile du Sahel and CS Hammam-Lif for the Tunisian Cup final. CS Hammam-Lif won the match 1–0, with Anis Ben Chouikha scoring the lone goal. Since that match, Tunisia has used the stadium for almost every major home game, including the 2004 African Cup of Nations Final. The Tunisians often host their matches at the Stade Mustapha Ben Jannet in Monastir which has a capacity of 20,000.

In addition, there are many other venues that host the Tunisian team, such as the Stade Olympique de Sousse, which hosted a friendly match between Tunisia and Switzerland in November 2012 and also hosted a match in the 2012 AFCON qualification between Tunisia and Chad which was won by Tunisia 5–0.

Stade Municipal de Gabès was also chosen to host a friendly match between Tunisia and Mauritania which ended with a draw in October 2016.

SupportersEdit

 
Fans of the Tunisian team while supporting their team.
 
Supporters in Stuttgart while watching the Tunisia-Ukraine match at the 2006 World Cup.
 
Tunisian fans in Saransk at the 2018 World Cup

Fans of the Tunisian national team display the country's national flag, usually with an emphasis on the red element. One of the greatest moments for the Tunisian team was when the Tunisian delegation at the Tunis–Carthage International Airport received a warm "welcome home" after the 1978 epic that delighted the Tunisians, who still remember the details, and the brilliant performance of the team was credited with adding a new berth of qualification to Africa for the World Cup.

The team's popularity also appeared in the 2004 African Cup of Nations in Tunisia, where the crowds were heavily attended during that period. The Stade 7 November of Radès was filled with 60,000 spectators in the six matches of the tournament.

The team's deterioration after the 2006 World Cup lead to their absence from the end stages of the next two world cups, and strained their popularity. In fact, the stadiums were almost empty with the national team's matches in that period. Between 2008 and 2014, local journalists accused the Tunisian team for their poor performance.

Of the fans that kept supporting the squad in bad times, Bechir Manoubi was one of the most loyal. He attended the team's matches worldwide since 1960, he was famous for wearing the Mexican hat and his suit with thousands of slogans and cards for the various events he covered. The 2006 World Cup qualifying match on 6 October 2005 between Tunisia and Morocco, which was just days before his death, was the last event he ever attended.

The emergence of skilled players and the rise of a new promising generation in addition to good results in the second term of Henryk Kasperczak, increased fans' enthusiasm and belief in a successful World Cup campaign. Because of this popularity peak, FIFA named the Tunisian fans among the best in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

This choice comes after the great attendance of the Tunisian masses, which turned to Russia in large numbers between 15 and 20 thousand fans, attended and supported the Tunisian team in their three group matches of the World Cup. However, fan support fell as Tunisia once again failed to live up the heavy expectation, with the Tunisians unable to progress from the group stage in its fifth World Cup participation.

RivalriesEdit

Tunisia's main football rivals are its neighbours Algeria, Morocco, and Egypt, with which it shares close cultural and political relations.

AlgeriaEdit

 
Tunisia-Algeria match in the 2013 African Cup won by Tunisia 1–0.

Tunisia played until today 45 games against Algeria.

The first match took place on 1 June 1957 in a friendly match against the FLN football team when Algeria was a French colony. It was at this time that the matches were the most regular. Indeed, the two teams met six times, between June 1957 and May 1958, with eight victories for the Algerians.

After the independence of Algeria, the first official match took place on 15 December 1963, in a friendly match at the Stade Chedly Zouiten in Tunisia. The teams also met three times in the qualifying phase of the World Cup in 1970, 1978 and 1986. The overall record is slightly favorable to the Algerians with sixteen wins, fourteen draws and fourteen losses. The last defeat of Algeria against their neighbors dated back to 20 January 2017 during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations which was hosted by Gabon. Before this match, the two teams had met once in the African Cup of Nations finals in 2013, which was also dominated by the Tunisians. Currently, the Algerians dominate the head-to-head record and international achievement, nonetheless, in official competitions, Tunisia proves to be more dominant than Algeria.

MoroccoEdit

 
Tunisia-Morocco match on 5 June 2010 in Casablanca.

Tunisians and Moroccans have played 50 games since their independence from France in 1956.

Their first match was for the 1962 World Cup qualification, took place on 30 October 1960 in Casablanca. Most of the matches were played in the FIFA World Cup qualification as they met in the qualifiers of 1962, 1970, 1978, 1990, 1994 and 2006. They also met 4 times in the African Cup of Nations. Two of them ended in a draw in 1978 and 2000 and the other two matches with the victory of the Tunisian team in 2004 and 2012 Africa Cup of Nations.

In fact, their most important match was the 2004 African Cup of Nations Final in Stade 7 November in Tunisia, where the Tunisians won their first African title. The overall record is favorable to the Moroccans with 13 wins, 28 draws and 9 losses; but Tunisia has managed to dominate majority of official encounters in major competitions. The last match between the Maghrebian teams dated back to 28 March 2017 during a friendly match won by Morocco in Marrakech which contributed to the dismissal of the Tunisian coach Henryk Kasperczak.

The two teams are similar in terms of both having a single African Cup and the two teams have also qualified for five World Cups, despite their numerous World Cup qualifying matches. They qualified for the same tournament in 1998 in France and 2018 in Russia.

EgyptEdit

The match between the Egyptian and the Tunisian team are one of Africa's best and most exciting matches for their long continental history. The two teams have met 39 times in both official and friendly matches. Tunisian and Egyptian teams have collected 25 official matches and 14 friendly matches. The overall record is slightly favorable to the Tunisians as they won 16 matches and Egypt won 12 matches and ended 11 matches with a draw; however Egypt has achieved more successes in Africa than Tunisia.

 
Tunisia-Egypt in a friendly match in October 2012 in Abu Dhabi.

The Eagles scored 42 goals in the Pharaohs' goal, while Egypt scored only 35 goals against Tunisia. The largest goal scoring match was on 11 December 1977 for the 1978 FIFA World Cup qualification (CAF) after the great win of the Tunisians 4–1 which contributed in their qualification for the World Cup.

Tunisia have faced the Egyptian team 7 times in qualifying for either the World Cup or the African Nations Cup. The three World Cup qualifications were in 1974, 1978 and 1998 where Tunisia qualified in the last two editions against Egypt. The four qualifiers for the African Nations Cup were in 1978 (Tunisia won 3–2 after drawing 2–2), 1984 (0–0 draw in Tunis and the Pharaohs won in Cairo 1–0), 1992 (the teams drew 2–2 twice) and 2015 (Tunisia won 1–0 and 2–1 respectively), in addition to the current 2019 qualifiers for the fifth time, which Tunisia won the first game 1–0 in Radès and lost the second game in Alexandria 2–3.

The two teams met twice in the African Nations Cup finals in 2000 in Nigeria when Tunisia won 1–0 and in the next edition in 2002 in Mali when Egypt won with the same result. Hossam Hassan is the most of Egyptian players participating in the games of the Pharaohs against the Eagles of Carthage with 12 games, while Wahbi Khazri comes as the most of Tunisian players to participate in their matches against Egypt by 3 games.

Both Egypt and Tunisia also share a similar dubious record in the FIFA World Cup, with both teams being unable to progress beyond the group stage despite Tunisia qualifying for the World Cup five times, while Egypt qualified only three times.

Historic kitsEdit

KitsEdit

The Tunisian national team home kit is all white with red trim, and the away kit is all red with white trim.

   
Tunisia 2008 Africa Cup of Nations 1st and 2nd kits
Kit supplier Period
  Adidas 1970–1994
  Lotto 1994–1998
  Uhlsport 2000–2001
  Puma 2002–2010
  Burrda Sport 2010–2016
  Uhlsport 2016–2018
  Kappa 2019–

See alsoEdit

Other football codes

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. 16 July 2020. Retrieved 16 July 2020.