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Khazri: Tunisia can go far in Russia

  • Tunisia crowned a gaggle containing Congo DR, Guinea and Libya to qualify for Russia 2018
  • The Eagles of Carthage had been passed a difficult draw with England, Belgium and Panama
  • Tunisia are returning to the arena finals after a 12-year absence

Present at 3 successive FIFA World Cups between 1998 and 2006, the Eagles of Carthage had been wonder absentees from South Africa 2010 and Brazil 2014. As Tunisia midfielder Wahbi Khazri defined in an unique interview with FIFA.com, that long absence from the arena finals taught him and his team-mates a precious lesson.

“After 12 years away, we’ve made history by qualifying for Russia,” mentioned Khazri. “We worked hard at our clubs to make sure that we’d be ready for the preliminaries. Thanks to the support of the fans and the perseverance of the players, we’ve managed to book our ticket for Russia 2018. We’re very happy to have done the people of Tunisia proud by qualifying.”

A very important factor
Unlike fellow African qualifiers Nigeria, Senegal and Egypt, the Tunisians would not have any stars taking part in for Europe’s main golf equipment. What they do have, despite the fact that, is crew spirit, a top quality that helped them get the simpler of Congo DR, some of the easiest groups at the continent.

“We have a great generation of players,” Khazri mentioned. “Everyone performs for the crew and it is extra than simply the 11 gamers at the pitch. We’ve were given 23 or 24 gamers in a position to go in the market and provides their all. The trainer believes in us, which provides us the power we want to be triumphant on the World Cup.

“Our strength lies in our preparations as a team,” he added. “All our internationals, or nearly all of them, are first-choice players with their clubs. We’ve been working hard with our clubs. That’s very important if we want to be on top of our game with the national team on a technical and physical level. It’s hard to earn a place and everyone knows they have to work with their club to get selected, which explains why the national team has come on so much recently.”

New flooring?
Tunisia had been drawn into a decent staff with England, Belgium and match novices Panama, despite the fact that Khazri is extra excited by their arrangements than their combatants: “I’m optimistic. I don’t fear any team at the World Cup. We’re going to respect all our opponents, but they’ll be showing us respect too because we performed well in qualifying. I hope we can go as far as possible, but we need to be well prepared if we’re going to do that.”

Though Tunisia failed to succeed in the second one spherical in their 4 earlier global finals appearances, Khazri believes they can transparent the hurdle this time: “Our first function is to get previous the crowd segment. If we do this, then we’re going to be capable to get started dreaming. Our training team of workers know what they are doing and that is an unbelievable era of gamers. We’re seeking to play neatly as a result of that is a very powerful factor. I feel we now have were given a crew that can go far in Russia. We must struggle and provides our all at the pitch to do justice to the Tunisian folks.

“We all know that preparation is necessary. We’re going to take a look at and cope with our susceptible issues and broaden our strengths in order that we can be 100 in step with cent in a position. We’re stuffed with self belief as a result of we beat groups like Congo DR and Egypt in the qualifiers for the Africa Cup of Nations. That’s why I feel Tunisia can go far on the World Cup.”

Did you realize?

  • Tunisia’s fit in opposition to England on 18 June would be the 2d World Cup assembly between the 2 nations. England gained the primary, at France 1998, 2-Zero.
  • Tunisia and Belgium performed out a 1-1 draw at Korea/Japan 2002. Marc Wilmots opened the scoring, with Raouf Bouzaiene equalising with a free-kick.

Wrapping up our chat, Khazri spoke of the enjoyment he feels at collaborating in the World Cup: “This generation deserves to play the World Cup. We’ve worked really hard on the pitch and it’s something we’ve earned. And we can’t forget the fans, who’ve supported us home and away. It’s thanks to them that we beat some big teams and managed to qualify.”

Tunisia’s staff fits at Russia 2018
Tunisia-England (18 June, Volgograd Arena, 21:00 native time)
Belgium-Tunisia (23 June, Spartak Stadium, 13:00 native time)
Panama-Tunisia (28 June, Kaliningrad Stadium, 20:00 native time)
Find out extra concerning the Tunisian nationwide crew with our crew profile.

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