By Maher Mezahi
Yassine Chikhaoui. After several debilitating injury spells, the Tunisian virtuoso seems to finally be hitting the optimum peak most of us were expecting when he first broke out onto the scene in 2006.
It’s extremely harsh criticising a striker that scored three goals in four matches, but Ahmed Akaichi’s stint as Tunisia’s targetman highlighted why the Carthage Eagles so badly need a striker. Akaichi was but a big body occupying space in attack and his three goals were tap-ins. On the ball the ES Tunis striker was industrious but wasteful.
Now that Issam Jemaa has retired, Tunisia lack a bona fide striker and they can no longer continue to experiment with makeshift options. Toulouse’s Wissam Ben Yedder could be an option worth pursuing if Georges Leekens can convince him to ditch his dream of playing for the French national team.
Tunisia’s quarterfinal match against Equatorial Guinea produced perhaps the ugliest parts of the entire tournament. Rajindraparsad Seechurn, a Mauritian referee officiated the match and seemed to favour the hosts. His controversial awarding of a penalty-kick provoked the wrath of several Tunisian players and staff at full-time and they chased him down the tunnel.
After the match, a few Tunisian delegates accused the CAF of conspiring in favour of Equatorial Guinea. The Carthage Eagles may now be suspended from AFCON 2017 if they do not retract their statement.