Australia entered the field under pressure against Tunisia. I couldn’t lose because I would be eliminated in the group stage of the World Cup in Qatar. But a Duke goal in the first half secured the 1-0 victory against the Tunisians today at Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah. It was the first triumph of the Oceania country in World Cups after 12 years – the last victory happened against Serbia, in 2010.
If the pressure was on the Aussies before the game, Tunisia ended the game in a shambles. After starting a draw with Denmark in the debut, the Africans arrived as favorites for today’s duel, but now they follow with one point, in the bottom of group D. Australia, which took 4-1 from France in the first game, has three points.
In today’s other group game, France (leader with three points) and Denmark (3rd with one point) face each other at 13:00 (Brasília time).
The last round of group D will take place next Wednesday (30), at 12:00 (Brasília time), with Australia x Denmark and Tunisia x France.
Australia better in the 1st half, but Tunisia scares
Australia got off to a better start and pressed on, trying most of their play on the left. The Australians put the ball in the Tunisian area, but they couldn’t take advantage of the chances.
At 23, Australia arrived again on the left to open the scoring. After a deflection in a cross by Goodwin, the ball went to Duke, who deflected it with his head, with his back to the goal, and hit the left corner of goalkeeper Dahmen.
Behind the score, Tunisia had a great chance later on with Drager in the 40th minute, but the Australian marking deflected the shot. Already in the additions, Msakni received from the right and, inside the area, knocked out.
Do the J! Australian marks and honors his son
Australian striker Duke, 1.86m tall, gave the Tunisians a hard time from the top. In the first half, there were at least three good headers. One of them was a goal. After scoring, he made a J with his hands to honor his son Jaxson, who was in the stands and was very happy with his father’s gesture. It’s impossible not to remember the typical celebration of Germán Cano, from Fluminense, who celebrates his goals by making an L for his son Lorenzo.
Pressure from Tunisia at the end
Australia took advantage on the scoreboard and retreated in the second half, with two lines of four. Tunisia went for it, but found it difficult to work the ball. With more space on the pitch, the two teams had good opportunities, but failed at the time of finishing. The Africans only took the first shot towards the goal after the middle of the second half.
In the final minutes, Australia pulled back for good and withstood pressure from Tunisia. When needed, Australian goalkeeper Ryan appeared with good defenses and showed confidence to keep without conceding goals in today’s match.
Australian wax gets boos
In the final stretch of the match, the Australian team still started to make wax, which irritated the Tunisian fans, the majority in the stadium. The Africans’ pace was not the same as on their debut, but they managed to boo Australia, who stalled for goal kicks and side kicks.
TUNISIA 0 X 1 AUSTRALIA
Competition: world Cup
Round: 2nd – Group D
Date and time: November 26, 2022, 7:00 am (Brasília time)
Place: Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah (Qatar)
Referee: Daniel Siebert (Germany)
Assistants: Rafael Foltyn and Jan Seidel (both from Germany)
VAR: Bastian Dankert (Germany)
Yellow cards: Laïdouni, Abdi and Sassi (Tunisia)
Red cards: did not have
Goal: Duke (Australia), at 23min of the 1st half
Tunisia: Dahmen; Bronn (Kechrida), Meriah and Talbi; Drager (Sassi), Skhiri, Laidouni (Khazri) and Abdi; Sliti, Jebali (Khenissi) and Msakni.
Coach: Jalal Kadri
Australia: Ryan; Karacic (Degenek), Souttar, Rowles and Behich; Irvine and Mooy; Leckie (Baccus), McGree (Hrustic) and Goodwin (Mabil); Duke (MacLaren).
Coach: Graham Arnold