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Morocco’s Ability to Defend Could Win Them the FIFA World Cup

Morocco's Youssef En-Nesyri Celebrates Goal on December 10, 2022 Along With Morocco's Ability to Defend Helped Them Win 1-0

Morocco’s ability to defend could mean for the first time ever, they and the continent of Africa could win the FIFA World Cup.  They will be heavy underdogs, but they have shown that they can beat quality opponents like Belgium, Portugal, and Spain.

Morocco’s Ability to Defend Could Help Them Earn a Victory at the FIFA World Cup

Morocco’s Ability to Defend

Morocco’s ability to defend has played a big role throughout the tournament. They never trailed in the tournament and have looked impressive so far. The only goal they gave up was their own goal caused by the speed of Samuel Adekugbe of the CanMNT in a game the Moroccans won 2-1 over Canada.

Morocco did concede a lot of possession in the second half of the game against Canada. They even conceded a lot of possession in the knockout rounds against Portugal and Spain, but it worked. With Spain, the game went into penalties, where the Montreal-born Moroccan goalkeeper, Yassine Bounou,  did not give up a single goal in the penalty shootout against Spain.

Morocco Has Been Competitive With Their Opponents

One might think that Morocco does not get many scoring opportunities compared to their opponent, especially in the knockout stages when they have conceded so much possession. That theory though is wrong. However, it has been their ability to go on the counterattack and earn themselves scoring chances that have helped them get this far.

In particular, a player named Azzedine Ounahi is a player France should pay attention to. This is what Luis Enrique said of him according to Nick Wright of Sky Sports:

“Madre mía, where did this kid come from?” Enrique, the former manager said. “He can really play.”

In Wright’s article, he talks about Ounahi being a key to Morocco’s counterattack which led to the game-winning goal against Spain scored by Youssef En-Nesyri. They also have some fast players on the team like Achraf Hakimi, who is the fastest player in the Bundesliga according to Morocco World News.

Morocco’s Ability to Defend: Is it Enough?

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This is what Pelé said about Morocco’s defence according to Ed Aarons of The Guardian:

“An African nation will win the World Cup before the year 2000.”

Of course, this did not happen, Cameroon made the quarterfinals of the 1994 FIFA World Cup, which was the farthest any African nation got in the World Cup before 2000. Morocco made the Round of 16 stage of the FIFA World Cup in 1986.

There are things Morocco needs to be aware of though. They averaged only 31.6 percent of the possession in the tournament so far and have not trailed yet. Do they have the ability to pick themselves up after giving up the first goal will be the biggest test this team could possibly face in these next one or two games?

Now Morocco is not the only team trying to make history. France is looking to win consecutive FIFA World Cups for the first time in 60 years. This feat has only been done twice in the history of the FIFA World Cup. The first was Italy in 1930 and 1934 while Brazil won the FIFA World Cup in 1952 and 1956.


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