Yassine Merriah of Tunisia challenged by Jordan Ayew of Ghana during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Last 16 match between Ghana and Tunisia at the Ismailia Stadium, Egypt.
Tunisia will now face off with tournament surprise package Madagascar in Thursday’s quarter final in Al Salaam.
Substitute keeper Farouk Ben Mustapha proved a gamble by head coach Alaine Giresse to bring him on for the penalties to be right as he saved one of Ghana’s kicks from Caleb Ekuban.
Tunisia all scored their penalties with Naim Sliti, Wahbi Khazri, Yassine Meriah and Dylan Bronn all scoring before Sassi sealed the tie. Ghana’s kicks were scored through Mubarak Wakaso, Jordan Ayew, Lumor Agbenyenu and Thomas Partey.
Bedoui had just been brought on to try and safeguard Tunisia’s 1-0 lead in the final minutes of the game, but his change was counter-productive.
Tunisia had gone ahead in the 72nd minute courtesy of a Taha Khenissi goal, but, as though fate would have it, the man who replaced him after 90 minutes undid the work he had done just 18 minutes earlier.
While it was Khenissi who scored Tunisia’s goal in the regular 90 minutes, it was the experience of Wahbi Khazri off the bench that turned the game into Tunisia’s favor.
In the 70th minute, Khazri swung in a corner from the right met by Khenissi again, this time the striker’s effort being denied by the crossbar.
But two minutes later, his industry paid off when he won the ball on the right before playing Wajdi Kechrida through with the right back’s low cross into the box being turned home beyond Richard Ofori by Khenissi.
Before Khazri’s arrival, it was Ghana who had the best scoring chances and they felt as though they should have gone to the break a goal up but had a late first half goal disallowed.
Skipper Andre Ayew back-heeled the ball into the net off his brother Jordan’s cross, but the goal was disallowed for a handball in the build-up.
With Tunisia’s late own goal, the game was forced into extra time and even then, it was a full contest despite the tired legs. Khazri forced a great save off Ofori with a strong shot from the edge of the area while Jordan Ayew fluffed Ghana’s best chance of the extra 30.
Asamoah Gyan who was a late second half substitute brushed a header his way, but his technique on the colley was awry, the ball going wide.
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