June 23, 2018 / 11:29 AM / 6 months ago

Soccer-Tunisia bring in Khaoui to attack unchanged Belgium

MOSCOW, June 23 (Reuters) - Saif-Eddine Khaoui will start for Tunisia, replacing Naim Sliti, against an unchanged Belgian line-up as coach Nabil Maaloul looks to attack the World Cup Group G seeds to secure the win they need to keep their last 16 hopes alive.

Belgium coach Roberto Martinez will field the same starting XI which beat Panama 3-0 on Monday, hoping for three points that would all but qualify his side for the next round before they face England on Thursday.

In bringing in Khaoui, who plays in France for Troyes, Maaloul is going for a right-sided attacking midfielder in his 4-3-3 formation, pushing Anice Badri further forward in place of Sliti on the left. Sliti starts on the bench after Tunisia’s 2-1 defeat by England, while Farouk Ben Mustapha stays in goal after coming on when Mouez Hassen was injured.

Should England beat Panama on Sunday, anything short of a win will put Tunisia on the ropes. Martinez has kept faith with a defensive line of three, with Dedryck Boyata in the centre flanked by Tottenham Hotspur pair Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.

Romelu Lukaku, who scored two against Panama, spearheads the Belgian attack, supported by Eden Hazard and Dries Mertens. (Reporting by Alastair Macdonald ; @macdonaldrtr Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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