‘Tunisia are like Atletico Madrid’ – Mahrez warns Algeria ahead of Tunis trip

Last Updated
Getty Images

Manchester City winger Riyad Mahrez has compared Tunisia’s style of play to Atletico Madrid ahead of Algeria’s trip to Tunis for a friendly match.

The African champions will battle Mondher Kebaier's men at the Stade Olympique de Rades on Friday as both teams intensify preparations for the 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifiers that will begin in September.

Algeria are on a 26-game unbeaten run with their last defeat dating back to October 2018 during an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Benin, while Tunisia are yet to lose their last 11 games since their 1-0 loss to Nigeria in the third-place match at 2019 Afcon.

“The match against Tunisia will be a different match. It's a tough team to play. Maybe a less playful team, but we know Tunisia. It's like Atletico Madrid, you dominate and in the end you get screwed,” Mahrez told DZ Foot.

On Sunday, Mahrez played a starring role as his strike helped Algeria pip Mali 1-0 at the Mustapha Tchaker Stadium.

It was a tense affair in the first 45 minutes until the 30-year-old broke the deadlock in the 57th minute.

In his assessment of the game, Mahrez described Mali as a difficult team that lacked the firepower to convert their chances.

“It was a complicated game. Mali are clearly not an easy team to play. We struggled in the first half, but the second half was better,” he said.

“Mali was good, we couldn't get the ball out well. It was a good team and the coach was able to sort out the problems at half-time. We're not always going to win by 3-0 or 4-0! It's one of the tough matches in Africa.

Article continues below

“Mali is a team with a lot of personality, very well organized in the middle, where they hurt us. However, they lacked a little presence in front to materialize their opportunities. It's a very good team.”

AC Milan’s Ismael Bennacer and Galatasaray’s Sofiane Feghouli did not make the matchday squad but the Man City star applauded the performances of Ramiz Zerrouki, Hachim Boudaoui and Adlene Guedioura, who held the midfield.

“Bennacer and Feghouli are important to us. They are not here today but Ramiz was not bad, Guedioura too and Hicham too even if it was a bit complicated. We were put in difficulty but the friendly matches are made for that,” he added.