Tunisia coach hails 'heroic' win over Morocco

Tunisia players celebrate their 2-1 win over Morocco
Tunisia have a mix of youth and experience in their squad

Tunisia coach Sami Trabelsi has hailed his side's 2-1 win over Morocco at the Africa Cup of Nations on Monday as "heroic".

The Carthage Eagles edged their North African neighbours with a gutsy performance, which Trabelsi attributed to their aggressive approach.

"It's a precious win, which is going to help us in our journey during this cup," he said.

"Without our spirit and aggression we wouldn't have won."

"We were up against a technically very good side but my men were excellent."

Goals from Khaled Korbi and a superb solo effort from Youssef Msakni put the Tunisians two up, before Houcine Kharjah pulled one back for the Moroccans, in a highly entertaining game in Libreville.

Trabelsi, however, immediately afterwards turned to his side's next game against debutants Niger - who were beaten 2-0 by co-hosts Gabon earlier on Monday - saying a result in that game on Friday was even more important.

Tunisia captain Karim Haggui says the Carthage Eagles' mix of youth and experience can help them to challenge for their first Nations Cup trophy since 2004, when they triumphed over Morocco in the final by the same scoreline.

"Tunisia's new generation wants to write its own history and looking at the potential of these young players that we've got, I really hope we can write it at this Nations Cup," Haggui said.

Morocco coach Eric Gerets, meanwhile, attributed his side's opening defeat to a period in the second half when his team "lost their heads and played with their hearts", resulting in Msakni's second for Tunisia.

"For nine or ten minutes we forgot our tactical organisation and that's why [Tunisia] were able to score.

"With a little bit of luck we could have come away with a draw, that would have been fairer than zero points.

"For 20 minutes in the second half I believe my team showed why we qualified, we played very good power-play football.

"[But] this cup can produce surprises, that's life."

Gerets also admitted the pressure was now firmly on his men in Group C, ahead of Friday's tie against Gabon.

"The next match is an all or nothing affair," he said.

"We've got more pressure on us now."

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