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Courtois mistake and Aboukhlal help intrepid Morocco shock Belgium

Courtois mistake and Aboukhlal help intrepid Morocco shock Belgium (2)
Courtois mistake and Aboukhlal help intrepid Morocco shock Belgium (2)

According to the evidence gathered thus far in Qatar, Kevin De Bruyne was correct when he said that this aging Belgium side has little chance of winning the World Cup. Morocco won the World Cup for the first time since overcoming Scotland in 1998 by punishing another lackluster performance from the team ranked second in the world, where Canada had failed.

Abdelhamid Sabiri and Zakaria Aboukhlal, two replacements, scored late goals to give Morocco its third World Cup victory, sparking delirious celebrations all around Al Thumama Stadium. The most recent shock of the tournament was fully earned but wasn’t a shock at all given Belgium’s meager effort

.Morocco was sharp and spirited, whereas Belgium, led by De Bruyne and Eden Hazard in particular, lacked ideas and had weak legs. Even the normally imposing Thibaut Courtois in the Belgium goal showed signs of aging. Although Roberto Martnez’s team can make it to the round of 16, they are a diminished version of the group that placed third in Russia in 2018.

Moroccan head coach Walid Regragui said, “We played against one of the strongest teams in the world with big players.” And we were aware that if we didn’t give it our all, we couldn’t hope to succeed. However, with these supporters, these athletes, and this attitude, we could perform at our peak.

The Moroccan national anthem was powerfully performed, signaling that the large majority of fans in the stadium were cheering for the north African squad.

Belgium was received with jeers, whereas Morocco was greeted with passionate cries at every touch. By controlling the tempo and dominating possession—78% of it in the first 15 minutes—Belgium tried to dull the roar of the crowd. That could be one way, to sum up, their performance. One more is that they made everyone drowsy.

Initially, Martnez’s team reacted well to their laborious and fortunate victory over Canada. The manager changed three players, including Amadou Onana, who was primarily in charge of last Wednesday’s small second-half improvement and switched back to a back four. They got off to a fast start, with Michy Batshuayi forcing Munir El Kajoui into a fantastic early save, but it was primarily possession play with no penetration.

Moments before the game began, Yassine Bounou informed Regragui that “he did not feel right,” forcing Morocco to switch goalkeepers. When the time came for Morocco to assemble for the team portrait, Bono, as he is more often known, had already lined up for the anthem.

Without or with you? Before calling El Kajoui, Regragui might have asked his first-choice goalie. I apologize; the first part was quite dull.

Hakim Ziyech had a significant impact on a Moroccan team that grew more assured and adventurous as the match progressed.

Belgium was frequently opened up by deft crossfield passes between the Chelsea winger on the right and the former Southampton midfielder Sofiane Boufal on the left. After one such move, Selim Amallah volleyed over, and right-back Achraf Hakimi wasted a good opportunity by shooting wide while the striker Youssef En Nesyri was waiting for a cross.

After Thorgan Hazard fouled Ziyech soon before halftime, Morocco thought they had their first World Cup goal. The free kick was taken by Ziyech, who fired it goalward. Courtois was duped by the flight and touched off with Sass while going unnoticed by Romain Sass and Hakimi. The Real Madrid goalkeeper was embarrassed when the ball slipped through his grasp and crossed the goal line, but VAR stopped the raucous Morocco celebrations. Sass’ shoulder was out of bounds.

When Morocco tried the move with 17 minutes left, Courtois would not be spared. A Thomas Meunier foul on the right resulted in a Sabiri free kick that was aimed at Sass, who was advancing to the near post. The central defender moved his belly out of the way while onside this time, fooling Belgium’s goalie once more. He lost control of the ball, and VAR decided not to spare him this time.

“We have good free-kick takers, and we saw that Courtois is occasionally overconfident at his near post,” the head coach of Morocco said. Because of his height, he occasionally leaves some room at the near post, which is what happened.

Martnez had already attempted to introduce an end product into Belgium’s presentation through several substitutions. Despite El Kajoui’s saves from Eden Hazard, Dries Mertens, and Batshuayi, they were unsuccessful.

As the five minutes of stoppage time were announced, panic was growing among the spectators. When Ziyech got free down the right and sent the ball back to Aboukhlal, the situation descended into chaos. Axel Witsel had given Aboukhlal too much room inside the penalty area, and Aboukhlal swept a beautiful finish into the top corner. “It is extremely incredible for Morocco to have four points after playing two of the finest teams in the world,” remarked Regragui. “But four points don’t satisfy me. I desire more.

Abdelhamid Sabiri and Zakaria Aboukhlal, two replacements, scored late goals to give Morocco its third World Cup victory, sparking delirious celebrations all around Al Thumama Stadium. The most recent shock of the tournament was fully earned but wasn’t a shock at all given Belgium’s meager effort

.Morocco was sharp and spirited, whereas Belgium, led by De Bruyne and Eden Hazard in particular, lacked ideas and had weak legs. Even the normally imposing Thibaut Courtois in the Belgium goal showed signs of aging. Although Roberto Martnez’s team can make it to the round of 16, they are a diminished version of the group that placed third in Russia in 2018.

According to the evidence gathered thus far in Qatar, Kevin De Bruyne was correct when he said that this aging Belgium side has little chance of winning the World Cup. Morocco won the World Cup for the first time since overcoming Scotland in 1998 by punishing another lackluster performance from the team ranked second in the world, where Canada had failed.

Abdelhamid Sabiri and Zakaria Aboukhlal, two replacements, scored late goals to give Morocco its third World Cup victory, sparking delirious celebrations all around Al Thumama Stadium. The most recent shock of the tournament was fully earned but wasn’t a shock at all given Belgium’s meager effort

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