The Super Eagles of Nigeria and the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia will square off in the spot for bronze at the continental showpiece, although a third place match might have not being the target for either sides but then win it might be enough consolation for the locals of both Countries.
Nigeria were looking to drag the game against Algeria into extra time. With the Algerians having qualified for the semi finals on Penalties after extra time against Ivory Coast 3 days before. With the mind-set that the Algerians will be tired, but Riyad Mahrez had other ideas and converted a sublime free kick to clip the Wings of the Super Eagles and send the Dessert Foxes to the finals where they will play against the Teranga Lions of Senegal.
Nigeria will meet Tunisia on Wednesday in the third-place play-off at Al Salam Stadium, which could see the likes of youngsters Henry Onyekuru, Samuel Kalu and Victor Osimhen given a chance after limited minutes in Egypt. Of the 23 players Rohr took to the AFCON, 21 of the have featured one way or the other, with Uzoho and Victor Osimhen yet to play any part in the Competition, Both Players are expected to start in this Bronze medal match.
According to Rohr – “We will draw lessons after the third place match. We have a very young team, we’re making progress and perhaps we lacked a bit of clear-sightedness (against Algeria) but we’re moving forward,”
“We have to work much more. Our midfield is the youngest one. (Wilfred) Ndidi, (Alex) Iwobi and (Peter) Etebo have to learn tactically and they have to make better communication, but I think with time they’ll be very good.”
Rohr praised the resilience shown by his side throughout the tournament, as they responded to a shock loss to Madagascar by toppling defending champions Cameroon and beating South Africa before coming from behind against Algeria.
“I congratulate my players for a big fight against this very good team,” said Rohr. “It was a big fight until the last minute.”
“It was a wonderful match, but we lost it so we are not happy. We scored an own goal which was unlucky but we came back like throughout the tournament when there was something difficult against us. A wonderful free-kick made the difference.”
He added: “The other day we won in the last minute against South Africa, this time we lost. That’s football.”
The former Gabon, Niger and Burkina Faso boss also praised the work done by Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi, who took over last year after the Desert Foxes finished bottom of their 2018 World Cup qualifying group.
“The result reflects what we saw on the pitch. The best team won,” said Rohr.
“The match confirms what I said about them making progress. They have made strides both tactically and technically and it’s going to be very tight with Senegal but Algeria have all the weapons to win.”
Both teams have met 17 times before this time, with Tunisia slightly having the upper hand with 5 wins to the Super Eagles 4 wins, with 8 of those 17 games ending in a draw.