The Tunisia national football team formed in 1956. The team joined FIFA and the Confederation of African Football in 1960. Tunisia created world cup history in 1978 by becoming the first African team to win a world cup finals game.
Tunisia’s first official game was a 2-1 loss to Algeria in 1957. The team’s biggest defeat came three years later in a 10-1 demolition by Hungary. From those inauspicious origins, Tunisia has gone on to become a powerful force in African football. The new millennium has seen the greatest period of success in the team’s history.
In 2000, Tunisia thrashed Togo 7-0 and repeated this scoreline in a 2005 defeat of Malawi. In 2004 Tunisia won their first major tournament by lifting the Africa Cup of Nations. Tunisia hosted the tournament and beat rivals Morocco in the final.
World cup 1978
Tunisia’s first world cup appearance was the 1978 competition, hosted in Argentina. The team faced Mexico, Poland and West Germany in the first round group stage. In beating Mexico 3-1, Tunisia become the first African team to win a game at a world cup. A 1-0 loss to Poland put pressure on the final group game against defending world champions West Germany. A 0-0 draw saw the Germans sneak into the next round at the expense of Tunisia, who were rightly proud of an excellent world up début.
World cup 1998
After a twenty year wait, the Tunisia national football team returned to the world cup finals in 1998. The team faced Colombia, England and Romania in the first round. An opening day defeat to England did not bode well for Tunisia, who then lost the second game to Colombia. A poor goal difference meant that even a final day victory would be unlikely to help Tunisia progress. Ultimately, a 1-1 draw with Romania saw the team finish bottom of their group. The team will have been disappointed with their results but glad to be playing at the highest level again.
World cup 2002
2002 saw the Tunisia national football team qualify for a second successive world cup. This time the team faced Belgium, Japan and Russia. The opening game saw Tunisia lose 2-0 to Russia, while the second saw a 1-1 draw with Belgium. Needing a strong win in their final game, Tunisia succumbed to a 2-0 defeat to Japan. Tunisia will have been disappointed not to have improved their record after again finishing bottom of the group with a single point.
World cup 2006
A third successive world cup took Tunisia to Germany in 2006. The first round saw the team play Saudi Arabia, Spain and Ukraine. In an improvement on previous years, Tunisia drew their opening game 1-1 against Saudi Arabia. The remaining games reverted to form, with Tunisia losing 3-1 to Spain and 1-0 to Ukraine. The team will not have been pleased to finish third. A superior goal difference to Saudi Arabia kept Tunisia from bottom place.
Ranked 48th by FIFA, the Tunisia national football team would love a return to their early millennium form.
World cup 2018
Fixtures to be announced.
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