Best Odds: 9/5
Two nations who are looking to secure a quarter-final showdown at this year’s African Cup of Nations, Ghana will meet Tunisia in Ismailia on Monday night.
Starting with Ghana, while the Blacks Stars may have managed to secure a 2-0 win over Guinea-Bissau last week, a result that saw them clinch top spot in Group F, James Kwesi’s men Appiah have struggled to make much of an impact out in Egypt this summer. Often seen to be the nearly men during the African Cup of Nations over the previous years, they have managed to record just a single victory in their three group matchups and their routine victory over Guinea-Bissau was just their first since the 23rd of March. Despite some questioning Appiah’s decision to return to his former role three years after partying ways with Ghana, the African giants still remain one of the most feared sides at this year’s AFCON. Although they are yet to find their top gear during their Group F campaign, Ghana will be boosted by their continued defensive resolve. Recording yet another clean sheet last week, the Blacks Stars have recorded five clean sheets in their last six matches across all competitions.
Jordan Ayew has impressed at the AFCON this year, scoring two goals in three group stage matches. He has kept the experienced Asamoah Gyan out of the team and is set to start alongside captain Andrew Ayew. Midfielder Thomas Partey should continue in midfield following his goal against Guinea Bissau.
As for Tunisia, while the Eagles of Carthage may have managed to secure a route out of Group E this summer, they find themselves in an almost identical situation to their opponents on Monday. Despite picking up a trio of wins over the likes of Croatia and Iraq before making the trip out to Egypt, Alain Giresse’s men once again failed to impress in their 0-0 draw against AFCON debutants Mauritania last week. Still looking for their first win after drawing each of their three Group E appearances, Tunisia will also be concerned by their recent performances against the Black Stars. Shipping four goals when the two nations last met, the Whites have failed to win any of their last three matchups against Ghana. Although the one-time PSG boss may have seen his side manage to just pinch second-spot ahead of Angola, Giresse will be concerned by Tunisia’s recent defensive issues. The Eagles of Carthage have recorded just one clean sheet in their last five matches across all competitions.
Captain Wahbi Khazri should once again lead the line for the Tunisians having scored once in Egypt. He is likely to be supported by Youssef Msakni who also has one goal to his name while Taha Yassine Khenissi could be handed a start having come off the bench against Mauritania.
Key Factors to Consider
- Tunisia have drawn each of their three Group F matches this summer.
- Ghana have drawn three of their last four matches across all competitions.
- The Black Stars have also recorded five clean sheets in their last six matches across all competitions.
- Tunisia have recorded just one clean sheet in their last five matchups.
- Ghana are unbeaten in their last three matches against Tunisia, winning two and drawing one.
On paper, this has all the makings of a matchup that could prove to be an incredibly cagey encounter. Given both Ghana and Tunisia have failed to find their best form out in Egypt this summer and both sides have now drawn six of their last seven combined matchups, we’re backing a similar outcome in Ismailia on Monday night.
Best Odds: 9/5
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