In the World Cup Group D encounter between Australia and Tunisia, Australia emerged victorious by scoring a single goal. The entire event involved defense vs attack. Australia could achieve success just once, and that was sufficient. Australia’s defense put Tunisia’s attack to the absolute test.
Australia and Tunisia competed at Al Janoub Stadium in a must-win match. One is a result of a tie against Denmark, and the other is a 4-0 defeat at the hands of England. Both placed second in Group D, and survival instincts were evident from the start. The winning probability for Australia was merely 28%, compared to 42% for Tunisia, who had a 30% chance of a draw.
In the first nine minutes of play, neither team scored. Since only one contestant could advance to the knockout stages, it was only logical for attacks to start from the beginning. Finally, something occurred in the tenth minute that could provide an advantage for the team. After Jebali was penalized for the handball, Australia was awarded a free kick.
In the 23rd minute of play, Mitchell Duke scored the game-winning goal. Duke’s header entered the box with a minimal necessary swing. Dahmen attempted, but received no response. Goodwin made it to the middle, and then Duke simply went in.
Tunisia was aggressive. The coach thought the team should have relaxed. Aissa Laidouni received a yellow card, giving Australia one free kick. Duke failed to capitalize on Mooy’s shot. The strategy centered on maintaining possession of the ball as much as possible.
Tunisia continued to attack against Australia’s traditional defense approach. It was clear that each team was playing its own game because the possession percentage was almost equal.
As halftime approached, a block by Harry Soutter prevented Drager from scoring. Three minutes were added to the regular 45-minute wait for a close encounter. Msakni and Jebali did work together to improve the game. They were successful to some extent but fell short of their primary goal of providing a score. Another opportunity for Tunisia to repent of the previously drawn event was lost.
In the 70th minute, Australia had an opportunity to score again. The perfect pass was not capitalized on by the leading attack, which slipped a little late. Tunisia answered in the next two minutes or so, with Msakni’s shot falling directly on Ryan’s hand.
In the 84th minute, Montassar Talbi took a 30-yard direct kick. Ryan stood firm on the ground to hold and fall for the save.
Six minutes over the 90-minute mark began with a Tunisia free kick and finished with a rebound for Australia.
Tunisia was not spared from desperation. In the second match of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, the team lost 1-0. The tournament ends for them while the Aussies stake claim over the chance to proceed to the knockout.