On Wednesday, July 17, Africa and the world will witness the “Eagles game” as the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia are set to battle it out against Super Eagles of Nigeria for third place position of the ongoing 2019 Africa Cup of Nation (AFCON) in Egypt.
These two sides are even on strength based on their previous record as Tunisia has beaten their West African counterparts twice and lost twice as well.
The first time the Carthage Eagles deflated the egos of the Super Eagles was in 1978 when both teams clash for the third position in the competition in Ghana.
That defeat would subsequently be avenged by the West Africans in the year 2000 when the Nigerians host the competition.
Since then, both sides have proved their quest not to play second fiddle to the other and have all won on various stages of the competition.
In the statistics below, we take a look at the outcomes of previous clashes between the two sides in the AFCON competition and the possible outcome of Wednesday’s third place game.
Previous clashes between Tunisia and Nigeria
16.03.1978 Accra (Third place) Nigeria 1-1 (awarded 2-0) Tunisia
23.01.2000 Lagos (Group stage) Nigeria 4-2 Tunisia
11.02.2004 Rades (Semifinal) Tunisia 1-1 (5-3 on penalties) Nigeria
04.02.2006 Port Said (Quarterfinal) Nigeria 1-1 (6-5 on penalties) Tunisia
The two sides exhibited some great football during the preliminary stages and were determined to play in the final, however their dreams were cut short after they were defeated at the semi-finals stages of the competition by their opponent.
The West African team, Nigeria lost 1-2 to Algeria last Sunday, while Tunisia were defeated 0-1 by Senegal.
Nigeria had played five matches prior to their semi-finals game; they recorded victory against Burundi, Guinea, Cameroun and South Africa. Their only defeat was against Madagascar in the third round of matches in the group stage.
Even though by their previous record it is difficult to predict, Nigeria are likely to recover from their defeat to Senegal in the semifinal to cage the Carthage Eagle and return to Lagos with the trophy.
Unfortunately, their opponent, Tunisia drew all three group stage matches against Angola, Mauritania and Mali. They qualified against Ghana after 1-1 stalemate on 5-4 penalty shootouts in the round of 16. Their heaviest victory came against Madagascar defeating them 3-0.
Until they were crashed out by Senegal in the semifinals, Tunisia were considered among the favourites of the competition and they would have to lift their game in order to defeat a determined Nigeria side on Wednesday.