Tunisia vs England World Cup Group G Pre-Match Preview
The wait is not that far away, Tunisian and English supporters will have the date 18/06/18 stuck to their memory cells for the start of both teams’ journey in what is often claimed to be the greatest competition on Earth.
The tournament will be watched by a billion or two people, but what of these two teams joined in Group G? Does anyone think that Tunisia will win other than their loyal supporters. Well if anything is to be learned from previous World Cups, England have a good track record of disappointing their supporters, so Tunisia need not be too worried. Whilst there will be jubilant singing from the English corner of the Volgograd Arena, no doubt “Three Lions On The Shirt” will be heard.
England won the World Cup in 1966 and there is almost an expectation in the country, of a divine right to the win the tournament each time the team makes it. Poor Tunisia have only a 10% chance of winning, according to expert football pundits. What do they know? England’s current manager, Gareth Southgate, is clearly committed to his country’s football, despite being single-handedly blamed for England bowing out of the Euros 1996 in a penalty shoot out against Germany. Who knows what the country will do to Mr Southgate if England do not make it past the Groups stage of the World Cup 2018.
It is too early to know who will be on the team sheet for Tunisia or England, but Tunisia need not to throw in the white towel just yet. Out of the 14 times England have qualified the team has had some appalling results. In the group stages in Brazil 2014 England could only manage a 0-0 draw against Costa Rica. 2010 saw England only manage a 1-1 draw against United States and the score against Algeria was 0-0.
Tunisia can take inspiration from the successes of Cameroon who ignited excitement in the 1990 World Cup tournament, they beat Argentina and the final score was Argentina 0 - Cameroon 1, that team had the likes of Diego Maradona playing during that tournament.
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Never underestimate the underdog. Tunisia could pull off one of the greatest upsets in World Cup history. A win could turn the fortunes of Group G around. The English are not very good at losing at football, especially big stages such as the Euros and the World Cup. Ask Gareth Southgate. It is surprising that he wants to put himself in the spotlight. Maybe he feels he has something to prove after 1996.
It may seem like the eyes of the world will be on Tunisia on the 18th June 2018, but they need to go out and be fearless. Most followers of the English Premier Division will know of the fairy tale success that little Leicester managed to achieve - first place in 2016. Their logo across the city in the last month of the competition was “#fearless”. The city was wearing Leicester City blue, even women were wearing hijabs and saris in that blue, supporting the team.
Whatever happens, it will be exciting on the 18th June 2018. As every PE teacher tells their pupils, ‘it’s not the winning, it’s the taking part’. Or is it the other way around?
Possible starting lineups
Tunisia: Moez Ben Cherifia; Walid Hichri, Syam Ben Youssef, Oussama Haddadi, Hamdi Nagguez; Naim Sliti, Yousesf Msakni, Mohamed Ben Armor, Wahbi Khazri, Yassine Meriah; Hamdi Harbaoui
England: Jack Butland; Danny Rose, John Stones, Gary Cahill, Kyle Walker; Dele Alli, Eric Dier, Jordan Henderson, Raheem Sterling; Marcus Rashford, Harry Kane
Tunisia vs England Prediction
It will be one good game of football. Tunisia will play aggressive football in defending and their main objective will be fast counterattacks. On the other side this game is a must win for the Three Lions and their main objective for the match will be ball possession. They will play very cautious and will try to win to nil. So we expect from England to beat Tunisia with correct score 2-0.