June 18, 2019 / 2:03 AM / 2 months ago

FACTBOX-Soccer-Profile on Tunisia team for 2019 African Cup of Nations

June 18 (Reuters) - Factbox on African Cup of Nations qualifiers Tunisia.

African Cup of Nations record:

Previous appearances in finals: (18) 1962, 1963, 1965, 1978, 1982, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2017.

Best performance: Winners 2004

Drawn in Group E with the Angola, Mali and Mauritania.

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Coach: Alain Giresse

The Frenchman coaches a country at the Nations Cup for a fifth time after Gabon (2010), Mali (2012), Senegal (2015) and Mali again two years ago. He has also coached at club level in Morocco on top of spells with Toulouse and a brief run in charge at Paris St Germain. He is best known for his playing days when he was part of a dynamic French midfield which included Michel Platini, and that reached the semi-finals of the 1986 World Cup in Mexico.

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Key player: Wahbi Khazri. Age: 28. Striker.

After a miserable time at Sunderland, Khazri rediscovered his flair and dribbling ability and is coming off a stellar season at St Etienne.

He will captain Tunisia again after leading them at the World Cup in Russia last year and is approaching the milestone of 50 caps.

Khazri was born in Corsica and played for France at under-21 level but his parents both hail from Tunisia.

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FIFA world ranking June 2019: 25

How they qualified: Top place team in Group J, ahead of Egypt, Niger and Eswatini.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Moez Ben Cherifia (Esperance), Farouk Ben Mustapha (Al Shabab), Moez Hassen (Nice)

Defenders: Karim Aouadi (Etoile Sahel), Rami Bedoui (Al Feiha), Dylan Bronn (Ghent), Mohamed Drager (Paderborn), Oussema Haddadi (Al Ittifaq), Nassim Hnid (CS Sfaxien), Wajdi Kechrida (Etoile Sahel), Yassine Meriah (Olympiakos)

Midfielders: Anice Badri, Ayman Ben Mohamed, Ghaylen Chaalali (all Esperance), Mark Lamti (Bayer Leverkusen), Youssef Msakni (Eupen), Ferjani Sassi (Zamalek), Naim Sliti (Dijon), Ellyes Skhiri (Montpellier), Bassem Srarfi (Nice)

Forwards: Firas Chaouat (CS Sfaxien), Wahbi Khazri (St Etienne), Taha Yassine Khenissi (Esperance). (Compiled by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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