Morocco surprises Portugal, first African team in the semi-finals of the World Cup

Morocco surprises Portugal, first African team in the semi-finals of the World Cup

Morocco made history by defeating Portugal and became the first African country to reach a World Cup semi-final.

This sound you can hear is that of the celebrations in Marrakech, Casablanca and all over Morocco.


Youssef En-Nesyri’s first-half header was enough for Morocco as they sat back and allowed Portugal plenty of ball, but Bruno Fernandes hit the bar, smashed another and Joao Felix and Cristiano Ronaldo (who came off the bench) were denied by the brilliant Yassine Bounou in the Morocco goal.

Substitute Walid Cheddira was sent off late for two yellow cards but Morocco held firm amid incredible scenes as their fans went wild at the final whistle at the Al Thumama stadium as they have now beaten Spain in the round of 16 and Portugal in the quarter-finals.

Morocco coach Walid Regragui was the first-ever African manager to reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup and he is now heading to the semi-finals, just months after taking charge of Morocco. The 22nd-ranked side in the world beat star-studded Portugal as Cristiano Ronaldo was shown leaving the pitch in tears at the final whistle as what was surely his last World Cup appearance ended in a bitter disappointment.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub ]

As for Morocco, they will now face England’s winner against France in the semi-finals of the World Cup, as the Atlas Lions have kept four clean sheets in five games and have incredible momentum ahead of the last four. .

Intensity, challenge, conviction behind the Atlas Lions who make history

It was the Morocco tournament summed up in 90 minutes. Screamed by their huge crowd in Qatar, they were a total team and knew exactly what they were doing every second of the game. Their flair players provided class when it mattered, they were skilled on the counter and they are so well organized and industrious. They had 27% possession and never really looked out of control in the game. There were heroes throughout their squad and they seemed totally convinced they could beat Portugal. And they did. History has been made.

The stars of the show

Sofiane Amrabat: Another display full of intensity, hard tackles and midfield leadership. What a tournament he had.

Yassine Bounou: Made a nice save to refuse Félix and kept yet another clean sheet.

Morocco v Portugal
Chart via

How to watch Morocco vs Portugal live, stream link and start time

To start up: 10 a.m. ET, Saturday, December 10
Stadium: Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
Spanish TV channels: Telemundo
Broadcast in Spanish: Peacock (all 64 games)

What a stop from Bounou! He denies the effort of Joao Felix from the edge of the surface.

Great counters from Morocco whenever they get the chance. Their wounded side holds firm. More than 10 minutes of regulation to do. Can they hang on to make history! ?

The second half is on and Morocco are so close to getting a second. Hakim Ziyech whips in a brilliant free-kick cross but Diogo Costa saves as everyone misses.

Bruno Fernandes hits the crossbar from a ridiculous angle. So close to an incredible goal from Bruno!

GOALLLL! Morocco ahead. It happened. What a head from Youssef En-Nesyri.

So close ! Joao Felix’s deflected shot loops towards the top corner but goes just above.

Morocco were solid but Portugal had a few half chances.

Key scenarios, actors to watch closely

Bounou – spelled Bono on his shirt – was sensational on penalties, but the Moroccan defenders limited Spain to just one shot on target. Romain Saiss was particularly good in the middle of the back line while Achraf Hakimi and Noussair Mazraoui were effective outside, attacking and defending.

Portugal put Goncalo Ramos in Cristiano Ronaldo’s starting XI and the 21-year-old centre-forward scored three goals and added an assist against Switzerland. Bruno Fernandes was wonderful for Portugal, while Ruben Neves and Rafael Leao were able to get through the game with small subs and should be rested if called up by Fernando Santos, who is looking for a World Cup to go with his crown. EURO.

Quick facts about Morocco

Current FIFA World Ranking: 22
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 6
How they qualified: Automatically qualified from CAF
Coach: Vahid Halilhodzic
Key players: Achraf Hakimi, Yassine Bounou, Youssef En-Nesyri, Romain Saiss

Quick facts about Portugal

Current FIFA World Ranking: 9
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 8
How he qualified: Qualified from UEFA via playoffs
Coach: Fernando Santos
Key players: Cristiano Ronaldo, Ruben Neves, Bruno Fernandes, Joao Cancel

Follow @NicholasMendola

#Morocco #surprises #Portugal #African #team #semifinals #World #Cup

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *