Tunisia fell to a second consecutive World Cup defeat as they were thoroughly outclassed by Belgium, losing 5-2 at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow.
TUNISIA OFF THE PACE
Just like against England, the Tunisians were slow in matching Belgium’s intense start to the game. Ultimately, there was an obvious lack of energy from Tunisia. After the 65th minute mark, it was worse as the Tunisians were beaten for pace on so many occasions and were totally dominated in the midfield. I have never seen a team display a lack of fitness like this Tunisian side.
The 3-4-3 formation requires the wing backs to be both offensive and defensive minded. Yannick Carrasco is very good offensively but has an extremely weak defensive ability. In the first half, Fakhreddine Ben Youssef, Wahbi Khazri, Saif-Eddine Khaoui and Dylan Bronn(who was replaced by H. Nagguez) had good spells on the right flank due to Carrasco’s lack of defensive discipline. It was of no surprise that Tunisia scored their second goal from the right flank hence Roberto Martinez must consider his tactical options when he meets better opponents.
TUNISIA’S AWFUL DEFENDING
The relative ease with which Belgium sliced open Tunisia’s defence is really disturbing. The pressing from the Tunisians was not forceful enough. On the ball, the Belgians had enough time and space to pick their passes. Tunisia’s transition from attack to defence was also incredibly slow. It is of no surprise that Belgium had as many as 12 shots on target. Michy Batshuayi came on in the 68th minute and could have easily scored a hat-trick. Tunisia’s defensive performance, especially in the second half, was extremely awful and pathetic, to say the least.
TUNISIA’S LACK OF DISCIPLINE ON THE BALL
There were just so many misplaced passes from Tunisia. One of such giveaways resulted in Romelu Lukaku’s first goal. Let me rest my phalanges. Tunisia was just not up to the task.
THE ISSUE OF NORTH AFRICAN PERFORMANCE IN THE WORLD CUP
This balls down to strategy and style. Africans are noted to be powerful but the North African breed are more stylish than powerful. The lack of power from the North Africans play them into the hands of European and South/ North American opponents. There is also a lack of tactical discipline from the North African sides. It is of no surprise that no North African side has made it to the quarter-final stage of the world cup.