Tunisia did not have an easy start to the competition.
Two days before the match against Gambia, coach Mondher Kebaier learned the bad news: seven other players tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday.
Are concerned: Khazri, Maaloul, Ben Hamida, Ben Romdhane, Chaalali, Dhamen and Jmal.
This list is added to the other absentees in previous matches, already positive: Sliti, Touzghar, Haddadi, Bronn and Jebali.
In total, the North African nation has 12 absentees, making it the selection most affected by the virus.
🔴⚪ The point before Gambia-Tunisia:
Drager is recovered from the Covid.
Sliti, Jebali, Touzghar, Haddadi and Bronn will perform further tests before the game.
Khazri, Ben Romdhane, Chaalali, Ben Hmida, Dahmen, Jmal and Maaloul are already forfeited.#CAN2021 #TeamTunisia pic.twitter.com/70NLQOECMu
— Tunisia Football (@tunisiefootball) January 18, 2022
The game against Gambia should still take place.
The health protocol put in place by CAF stipulates: “a team will be required to play a match if it has a minimum of eleven players available who have tested negative.
In the event of the absence of a goalkeeper, another player from the team must replace the goalkeeper, provided that the total number of players available is at least eleven.
The task will be hard for the Tunisian technician Mondher Kebaier to set up an eleven likely to seek victory against Gambia, first of the group.
After a defeat in the first match against Mali, the Carthage Eagles made up for it by winning 4-0 against Mauritania – the last of the group – with in particular a double from Stéphanois Wahbi Khazri.
With three points, Tunisia ranks 3rd in group F. Victory is imperative against the Gambians, if they want to continue their stay in Cameroon and slip into 8th.
The Tunisians have only won the CAN once in 2004.