Senegal will be hunting for their first continental final appearance since 2002 when they take on Tunisia in Cairo on Sunday evening. The Lions of Teranga are the tournament favourites, having performed very strongly up to this point. The Senegalese have conceded just one goal in five games in the tournament so far, and have no fresh injury or suspension concerns ahead of the clash with Tunisia.
Tunisia have not enjoyed the best of tournaments, and yet they have somehow found themselves in the semi-finals. They drew all three of their group stage games, and then booked a place in the quarter-finals thanks to beating Ghana on penalties. They beat Madagascar 3-0 to book a place in the semi-finals, but have not looked especially convincing throughout the tournament.
Senegal vs Tunisia Prediction: Senegal 2-0 Tunisia
Our prediction for this game is that Senegal will end up as comfortable 2-0 winners. Tunisia have not shown sufficient quality in attack to trouble the solid Senegalese backline, while the North African side have also struggled to score enough goals to win games, apart from against the minnows of Madagascar. With stars like Liverpool’s Sadio Mane lining up in attack, the Lions of Teranga should be far too strong for Tunisia to cope with, and we think that a two-goal margin of victory is most likely. Backing Mane to score might boost your odds too, if you are planning some bets on the game.
Our recommended tip: Senegal 2-0
Our featured tip for this game comes from Betway, who are offering odds of 15/2 on Senegal beating Tunisia 2-0. Obviously, this bet matches our prediction for how the game will turn out, and it also provides some excellent value in terms of the odds on offer. Tunisia have looked decidedly unimpressive during this tournament, and it is something of a surprise that they have managed to reach this stage at all, given the mediocrity of their first round results. They were certainly fortunate to meet Madagascar in the quarter-finals. The Lions of Teranga are favourites with the bookies and we see no reason to disagree with that assessment.
Historically, Tunisia are the stronger side in clashes between these countries. The Tunisians have beaten Senegal nine times and there have been seven draws between the teams. Senegal have won just four times in games between the nations. The last meeting was in January 2017, in an Africa Cup of Nations game in Gabon. Senegal won 2-0, which was their first win over Tunisia since 1989, ending a run of 10 games without a win against Tunisia. Senegal have a real chance to improve that pretty average record against Tunisia this weekend.
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Players to watch: Sadio Mane & Youssef Msakni
Liverpool striker Sadio Mane has been in good form during this tournament, and he contributed a vital assist in the quarter-final victory over Benin, setting up Idrissa Gana Gueye to slot in the only goal of the game. He also netted two goals in the first round victory over Kenya, with one of those goals coming from the penalty spot. He also netted the only goal of the game in the first-round clash with Uganda.
Youssef Msakni scored one of the Tunisia’s goals in the 3-0 quarter-final win over Madagascar, and the Carthage Eagles will need the Belgium-based attacking midfielder to be in good form if they are to have any chance of beating Senegal. He scored his country’s first goal of the tournament from the penalty spot against Angola. That was a landmark for the player too, as it made him the first Tunisian to score in four Africa Cup of Nations tournaments.