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Ruthless Tunisia cruises past Mauritania

A fired up Tunisia side scored early and often as they overwhelmed Mauritania 4-0 in Sunday’s Group F matchup at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations. The Carthage Eagles were up two goals before ten minutes were complete and Wahbi Khazri scored two goals while setting up another in a Player of the Match performance. Tunisia are only a point behind Group F co-leaders and next opponents Gambia while Mauritania are now eliminated from contention for the knockout stage.

Mauritania got off to a nightmare start against a team that was motivated to bounce back from a disappointing loss to Mali, and Tunisia showed no mercy. In the 4th minute, Khazri attempted a combination pass and had the ball tackled away as he attempted to control the return pass in the Mauritanian area. The ball bounced loose to a waiting Hamza Mathlouthi and the Zamalek right back drilled a precise finish that left Mauritania keeper Babacar Diop with no chance.

It got worse for the West African nation four minutes later. The Mauritanian defense was disorganized following another Tunisian foray, and Anis Ben Slimane slipped a pass to Khazri in the penalty area. The Saint-Étienne forward had plenty of time to get his first touch right and slide a low shot past Diop for Tunisia’s second.

The underdogs finally got into gear a bit and produced a few promising attacks going forward. Tunisia goalkeeper Bechir Ben Saïd continued to look questionable after making his senior national team debut in the opener against Mali, and the Monastir shot stopper’s hesitance helped Mauritania threaten on a couple of occasions.

Another two-goal burst put the match far beyond reach for the Carthage Eagles. In the 64th minute, it was Khazri with more clever play as he slickly allowed a pass to go by him before running on to Ghailene Chaaleli’s set up and finishing past Diop with his left foot. Only two minutes later Khazri had time to dribble at the defense and pick out a through pass for Seifeddine Jaziri, who finished past the demoralized Mauritanian keeper.

Highlights of the match are below.


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