Baghdad Bounedjah was accurate from the spot as Algeria defeated neighbours Tunisia 1-0 in Tuesday evening’s friendly encounter.
A slow start to the game gradually turned into a cagey encounter as Algeria were forced to make a substitution before the first quarter of an hour, it was Le Havre’s Victor Lekhal, making his debut, who had to be taken off.
Mehdi Abeid, goal scorer in the previous game against Gambia, came in for the injured midfielder.
As the game crept towards the first half hour, Algeria came close to scoring on multiple occasions, Bounedjah was the first to fail to lob the keeper, that was then followed by Aissa Mandi heading over a free-kick by Riyad Mahrez.
The Manchester City forward then came very close himself after missing the goal by a matter of millimetres with his weaker foot.
With minutes left till half-time, Tunisian substitute, Youssef Msakni saw his volleyed effort go just wide.
Moments later there was a penalty shout for the hosts, but Bounedjah was cautioned instead for simulating.
The Algerian striker could have given the Desert Foxes the lead at the start of the second half after he headed inches over a pinpoint free-kick from Saphir Taider.
Sofiane Feghouli, who has adapted a central position for Algeria, then played a great over the top through ball towards Bounedjah, who cut in on his left, but fired over with his right.
The hosts were then forced to make yet another substitution as Mehdi Abeid, who came on early in the game, had to be taken off after a dangerous tackle which only was deemed as a yellow card.
The penalty was then awarded in the 69th minute as the skipper Mahrez was tripped inside the box, Bounedjah then fired into the roof of the net to break the deadlock.
The inform Al Sadd striker then came close to getting a second after a nice run down the middle, Mahrez was an option to his right, but he decided to go for goal himself, which was saved by the Tunisian goal stopper.
Ounas looked lively in the final minutes of the game beating his marker with great speed and skill and came close after a good run up the left flank, he was unfortunately taken out before he could make a shot on goal.
Tunisia tried to get the equaliser, but it wasn’t to be as Alexandre Oukidja earned a clean sheet on his first start in goal.
Algeria XI: Oukidja, Attal, Mandi, Benlamri, Bensebaini, Lekhal (14’ Abeid), (66’ Ounas), Taider, Feghouli, Mahrez (c), Benrahma (75’ Benkhmassa), Bounedjah