Against all odds, Morocco have made it all the way to the World Cup semifinals and, as a result, they have become the first African national team to pull it off in history. But, can they win the World Cup?
The answer is clear. Of course they can win it. In fact, I really think they can after seeing their wins against Spain and Portugal.
Morocco are not only the team that has conceded the less goals in the entire World Cup (one goal in five games), but that goal was an own one, which means that nor Croatian, Belgian, Canadian or Portuguese player has able to beat keeper Yassine Bounou all the way up to this point. As a result, he is clearly applying to be considered as one of the best players in the tournament.
The playing style from Morocco is ideal to face off a better national team names wise. The Africans defend as nobody else does and so they fall back against their opponents by reducing any gaps and multiplying efforts at every moment.
As soon as they recover the ball, they carry out very dangerous counterattacks and they manage to create superiority of players. In fact, they are able to make top quality offensive transitions because they have very fast and talented players to do so.
Achraf Hakimi, Hakim Ziyech or Sofiane Boufal, among others, are well-known. They are players who always try to do something different and who really pay attention to the instructions from coach Walid Regragui. Others such as Sofyan Amrabat (the brother of the well-known Nordin Amrabat) or Azzedine Ounahi are both getting all the spotlights on them at this World Cup as great players.
All in all, Morocco are one of the most difficult rivals to take on at this World Cup and so they have proven it. They have not lost a single game out of the five they have played so far and their next opponent, France, will also display a relatively similar playing style compared to Spain and Portugal (meaning that they will domain the ball possession).
If Morocco manage to deactivate the plan of Deschamps, it wouldn’t be crazy at all to think about the first African national team ever to make it to the World Cup final.
Translated by Guillermo Bermejo.
Main image: @EnMaroc.