At the end of 90 minutes, Tunisia were left disappointed as they have yet to make a mark on the 2018 edition of FIFA World Cup being hosted in Russia.
Africans were already smiling and rejoicing with less than 3 minutes to stoppage time before Harry Kane condemned Tunisia to a defeat to keep the continent of Africa without a single point in the World cup. The African continent is currently lagging behind as its teams are yet to pick up a point in four appearances.
The continent’s representatives in the competition are Nigeria, Egypt, Tunisia, Senegal and Morocco and are almost looking like they’ll all hit the exits already. Senegal remains the only African team left to play its first game. Nigeria’s odd to reach the quarter finals of the World Cup at 10bet is high.
A review of the performance of African teams so far have shown that the teams failure to maintain the needed concentration. This is especially true in the closing stages of their football matches and have contributed to their downfall in the competition. Egypt was the first African team to play in the 2018 FIFA World Cup and thought they put up a strong display against Uruguay despite playing without Mohammed Salah. The Pharaohs conceded a late goal which proved to be the decider of the game.
Despite dominating and outplaying Iran for the vast majority of the match,Morocco conceded a 95th minute own goal in a game that they deserved to at least grab a draw. Tunisia seemed to have finally grabbed a point for Africa after a spirited defensive display but Harry Kane found himself at the right place and time to pounce. His header would steal it late for the British.
Set Pieces Problematic
Another strong issue with African team have been in the aspect of set piece. All due respect, but the African teams have looked clueless in set pieces as the have conceded from set piece and set piece-related goals. This have been due to the lack of organization from the central defenders of the African teams.
Egypt and Tunisia were punished from set pieces. Morocco’s central defender Bouhaddouz could only convert the set piece ball to his own net against Iran team that never threatened throughout the game. Nigeria was not spared from the set piece horrors as the super eagles shambolic defending against Croatia was punished. Etebo’s own goal was as a result of shameful defending from Leon Balogun who failed to keep up with Mario Mandzukic’s aerial threat. The African team’s horror show was completed when Troost Ekong hacked down Mandzukic later in the second interval of the game.
Play Your Game, Africa
Many think that there’s an inferiority complex that has become a major factor in preventing African teams from displaying their talents and qualities in the World Cup. African teams have lacked the desire to play their own style of football in games as they have always preferred to sit and wait for counter attack.
Counterattacks are not synonymous with African football and have affected the continent’s teams negatively. African teams have lacked the desire to move forward when presented with chances due to fear of conceding. Egypt failed to push forward due to fear of conceding. Nigeria waited for a counter-attack against Croatia but it was to no avail as they ended up caging themselves in the game. Tunisia known for playing attacking football decided to play negative football against England despite the spaces provided by the three lions to exploit and were eventually punished late on in the game.
No doubt African teams have learnt their respective lesson and will be hoping to make amend for their poor first round performance in the second round of games. Senegal can be the rock on which the rebirth of African in the World Cup can begin from. The Senegalese football team is known to be an attacking minded side with Saidu Mane as an influential figure in the team. Senegal will be relied upon by all African when they lurk horns with Poland. Let’s see how it all goes.