Tunisia and Australia will face off this Saturday at the Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah.
Venue: Al Janoub Stadium (Al Wakrah)
They have kept four clean sheets from their last five games.
Tunisia have failed to score three times in their last ten games.
Australia have failed to score on four occasions in their last ten games.
The Socceroos have failed to win any of their last seven World Cup games (D1, L6).
Australia have failed to win any of their last ten fixtures against the current World Cup participants (D3, L7).
Head to head
Tunisia beat Australia 2-0 in the only meeting between both sides in 2005.
Latest performances in all competitions
After holding Denmark to a credible draw in their opening fixture, Tunisia will look to get their second win in a World Cup final since 1998 when they face fellow Group D outsiders Australia in Al Wakrah.
The North African side and their Australian counterpart are the two rank outsiders of Group D and both sides will be desperate to get a win here to ensure that they have a chance of progressing to the next Round.
Tunisia especially will see this as the perfect opportunity to put one leg in the Round of 16, as a win here could guarantee passage if Denmark lose to group D favourites, France in the other group fixture.
Jalel Kadri’s men will fancy their chances here, having already defeated the likes of Chile, Japan, and Nigeria in 2022. Their draw against three-time Round of 16 participants Denmark must be considered another tremendous overachievement.
And the underdog status appears to sit more comfortably with the Carthage Eagles, illustrated by their record of W2, D2, and L2 as favourites compared with W4, D1, and L1 as outsiders in all matches excluding friendlies this calendar year, which makes for an exciting test here given Tunisia are warm favourites in this fixture.
Injury-wise, head coach Jalel Kadri should have all 26 members of his squad to select from this weekend.
Possible Tunisia starting line-up
Aymen Dahmen; Montassar Talbi, Dylan Bronn, Yassine Meriah; Mohamed Dräger, Aissa Laidouni, Ellyes Skhiri, Ali Abdi; Youssef Msakni, Anis Ben Slimane; Issam Jebali.
Socceroos came close to stunning the world and FIFA World Cup defending champions France in their first game when they took a shock lead at this same stadium last Tuesday.
In an exciting first half at Al Janoub Stadium, Melbourne City’s Mathew Leckie and Adelaide United’s Craig Goodwin combined to put Australia ahead. But the Socceroos could only cling to that advantage for 18 minutes with France eventually winning 4-1 courtesy of goals from Olivier Giroud, Kylian Mbappe and Adrien Rabiot.
Reacting to the loss, head coach Graham Arnold admitted France were “bigger, stronger and faster” but felt “the boys did everything they could.” Indeed, the Aussies will feel proud of their performance against France and will fancy their chances of getting a result against a much weaker Tunisian side if they can repeat the same fighting spirit they showed against the World champions.
Meanwhile, Arnold will look to ring the changes in the starting XI after admitting that he has “the option of obviously changing players and making sure we get some fresh ones out there”. Whether he opts for a raft of alterations ahead of a key group stage fixture remains to be seen.
Possible Australia starting line-up
Matthew Ryan; Nathaniel Atkinson, Kye Rowles, Harry Souttar, Aziz Behich; Aaron Mooy; Mathew Leckie, Riley McGree; Jackson Irvine, Craig Goodwin; Mitchell Duke.
Tunisia 1-3 Australia