France vs Morocco’s will be historic for many reasons. They are meeting for the 6th time, and the score card is in favor of the French. The history-making FIFA World Cup 2022 run, has received the biggest attentions so far, as Morocco led by Walid Regragrui dribbled past one European football powerhouse and former colonial power after another — Belgium, Spain and Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal — to become the first African and Arab nation to reach the last 4 stage of the cup.
Both the teams have challenged each other 6 times over and France has remained victorious. At the semi-final match in the stadia, it is anticipated that Morocco’s fans to massively outnumber the French at the Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor by the time kick off comes around – while there is about seven hours still to wait. They will be supported by the whole Arab world.
Morocco, were spectacular throughout the tournament, and are currently unbeaten in this tournament and have stunned the footballing world – not once or twice but three times – by beating Belgium, Spain and Portugal. This semi’s will be a battle between Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe, Olivier Giroud and teammates are set to face Yassine Bounou, Achraf Hakimi, Hakim Ziyech and Co for the right to face Argentina in the World Cup final.
This World Cup has been as much a success of Moroccan football as it has been a triumph against footballing “brain drain”. Many of Morocco’s key players were born outside Morocco where they received their footballing education.
Players like Hakim Ziyech, Noussair Mazraoui and Sofyan Amrabat grew up in the Netherlands, Achraf Hakimi was raised in Spain, Yassine Bonou has Canadian connections, and Romain Saiss and Soufiane Boufal were born in France. Out of the 26 player squad, 16 were either born or raised in foreign shores, with coach Walid Regragui himself being born in Paris.
Wednesday’s France Vs Morocco match has political and emotional resonance for both nations. It dredges up everything that’s complex about the relationship in which France still wields considerable economic, political and cultural influence.
“This game is one of a kind,” Sabouni said. “Especially since France is next to beat.” “We can show the rest of the world that Morocco is no longer France’s backyard.” says Sabouni.
The last time France vs Morocco encountered each other was at the Stade de France in 2007, in a game that finished 2-2. Morocco took an early eighth minute lead through Tarik Sektioui, and then Sidney Govou equalised after 15 minutes for a French team that included William Gallas, Patrice Evra, Claude Makelélé and Karim Benzema. Samir Nasri thought he had won it for the home side in the 76th minute, but Moroccan substitute Youssef Mokhtari made it 2-2 with five minutes to go.
France vs Morocco Analysis – Run up to World Cup 2022 Finals
This matchup is the sixth time these two teams face off in the World Cup. France hasn’t lost any of these matchups, and Morocco will be looking to reverse the trend. Morocco has the talent, as players like Hakim Ziyech and Achraf Hakimi can keep up with the European juggernauts. This talent was on display when eliminating Portugal.
The opposition has yet to score on Morocco. The only score the team conceded was on their own goal, as Morocco has had the most vigorous defense in the 2022 World Cup.
Morocco changed their manager three months before the World Cup, making the team more cohesive. Usually, a new manager months before a tournament is a bad omen, but not for Morocco. They’re the underdog team at this point of the tournament, but they should not be counted out. Morocco thrives on this status, catching many teams by surprise.
You can watch a highlights package of that match here to get you in the mood which occurred 14 years ago. It is worth noting that there are some cracking goals, some dodgy goalkeeping, an extremely hostile atmosphere, an extravagant pair of co-commentators who genuinely say “Oh là là!” at one point, and a little wrestling match featuring Lilian Thuram.
The fact that all these players are playing for Morocco, instead of the countries they/their parents migrated to, is in itself a victory. Many African nations have struggled to attract such talent. In fact, the best example for this would be Morocco’s opponents, France. The French team is almost completely built up of migrants itself – players with origins outside of France, most often in one of its many colonies. The 2018 World Cup winning squad was hailed as an example of France’s diversity and inclusiveness.
Yet, behind the heartwarming story of Guinean Paul Pogba scoring for France in the World Cup final, or Malian N’golo Kante running the French midfield, hides the story of how African nations failed to gain from the talents of their most talented players. In many ways, this is the story of African football.
While football is the sport of choice for most in the continent, the very best African footballers are often born outside Africa or taken outside early in their lives after being spotted by European scouts. African teams remain poorer as a result.
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France vs Morocco match has heightened the spirit amongst football around the Arab Nations and also the stadia which anticipates a big crowd.
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