Tunisia’ Khalifa out of Niger game; Mathlouthi cleared

Karim Farouk, Thursday 26 Jan 2012

Keeper Aymen Mathlouthi recovers from minor injury, while FC Zurich striker Amine Chermiti is expected to lead Tunisia frontline against Niger on Friday

Saber Khalifa
Morocco's Mehdi El Mouttaki, right, is challenged by Tunisia's Saber Khalifa during their African Cup of Nations Group C soccer match at Stade De L'Amitie in Libreville, Gabon (Photo: AP)

FC Zurich striker Amine Chermiti will lead Tunisia’s frontline against Niger on Friday replacing Saber Khalifa, who sustained an injury while playing against Morocco last Monday.

The Evian striker is suffering from pains in his knee. Coach Sami Trabelsi preferred to give him a break, seeing that the player failed to train normally within the past few days.

Meanwhile, keeper Aymen Mathlouthi – who gave a heroic display in the Carthage Eagles 2-1 win over Morocco – has been cleared to play after picking a knock during Wednesday’s training session.

The Tunisians are set to press Niger to maintain their firm grip at the top of Group C and avoid any surprises.

“There are no small teams now. We learned the lesson and there will be surprises. We have to be very careful, but we must win that game to collect six points first to secure the qualification,” Trabelsi said at a Thursday press conference.

He also revealed that there would be some tactical changes to give his side better offensive options against Niger.

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