Tunisia hoped the soul would be the third fixed when it faces Burkina Faso in the quarter-finals after it was defeated in the 1998 editions on the latter’s land 7-8 on penalties, after they tied 1-1 in the original and extra time, and in 2017 in Gabon with a clean double.
Tunisia, which is seeking the second title in its history after the first at home in 2004, hopes to confirm its wonderful offer in the price of the final when it toppled Nigeria, the only holder of the full mark in the first round, by winning it 1-0, and achieving its first victory over Burkina Faso in five matches. Official (they met in the 2010 World Cup qualifiers, and the horses won 2-1 in Rades and drew 0-0 in Ouagadougou).
The victory of the “Carthage Eagles” came despite its suffering from several infections in its ranks with the Corona virus, which had a clear impact on its results in the first round, as it qualified as one of the best four teams in third place, with one victory at the expense of Mauritania, compared to two losses at the hands of Mali and Gambia.
Tunisia and its great coach were subjected to great criticism, especially after losing to Gambia 0-1 in the last round of the group stage, but its playmaker and scorer of the winning goal against Nigeria, Youssef Msakni, said, “We responded inside the green rectangle, God willing, we will go far in the African Championship.” “.
He stressed, “We do not skimp on our country’s team with a point of sweat, we do everything we can to make the Tunisian people happy, we bear a huge responsibility,” noting that “criticism strengthens us, we are keen to go far in the tournament, we need the support of the Tunisian public. Coach Munther Al-Kabeer promised us, after he was infected with Corona, to qualify for the quarter-finals, and we accomplished the task successfully.”
Tunisia is regaining the services of its great coach, who missed the match against Nigeria due to his infection with the “Covid-19” virus, and defender Ali Maaloul, along with its captain, Wahbi Khazri, who entered as a substitute against Nigeria after he had just recovered from the virus.
But Tunisia’s mission to reach the second semi-final in succession will not be easy against Burkina Faso, which embarrassed the host Cameroon in the opening match and lost to it with difficulty 1-2, after it advanced with a clean goal, and toppled Gabon from the final price on penalties 7-6 after they tied 1-1 in both the original and the extra time.
Burkina Faso, led by its local coach, Camu Malo, is also counting on its star Aston Villa wing Englishman Bertrand Traoré in their quest to reach the semi-finals for the third time in their history after 1998 at home when they finished fourth and 2017 when they were runner-up.
Hosts Cameroon aspires to stop the Gambia’s adventure when it meets them at the Jaboma stadium in Douala.
It is the last match at Douala Stadium, which faced many criticisms from many teams because of its bad grass, so the Confederation was only transferring the last two matches that were scheduled on its soil (one in the quarter-finals + Senegal and Equatorial Guinea + and the other in the semi-finals) to the stadium.” Ahmadou Ahidjo” in Yaounde.
Cameroon, which is seeking the sixth title in its history, is counting on the ground and the public and its striking offensive power to reach the last four for the tenth time in its history.
Cameroon has the best attacking line in the tournament so far, with nine goals, shared by its captain, Saudi Al-Nasr striker Vincent Abu Bakr, the top scorer with six goals, and French Lyon striker Karl Toko Ekambi, who has three goals.
Despite reaching the quarter-finals, Cameroon did not provide convincing performances to win the title, as they fell behind twice in the group stage against Burkina Faso 2-1 and Ethiopia 4-2, before falling to a draw against Cape Verde.
It also suffered two things to overcome the Comoros obstacle 2-1 in the final price, knowing that the Arab team played the match without a goalkeeper because two guards were infected with the Corona virus and the third with a shoulder injury.
Cameroon is well aware of the difficulty of its task against Gambia, which made history in its first participation in the continental wedding by reaching the final price.
Gambia, led by its Belgian coach, Tom Saintfet, booked its ticket to the final price in a well-deserved manner, especially as it finished the first round without a loss and with two victories, most notably over Tunisia 1-0 in the last round, then beat Guinea with the same result in the final price.
Santveit praised his players after qualifying for the final price, saying, “These are my heroes.”
When asked about Gambia’s secret, he added, “It is a team, not individuals, but a team that plays as a group, with a dream and with a strategy. Every player is very disciplined and does everything to make it happen.”
Gambia has not tasted loss in its first four matches (3 wins and a draw), and it has become the second team in the twenty-first century to not lose any match in the four meetings it is playing in its first participation in the competition, after Madagascar in 2019 (two wins and two draws).