Morocco vs France: Can The Lion Roar To The Final?

The Atlas Lions of Morocco have already set a record as the most successful African team in World Cup history – becoming the first ever nation to reach the semi final of the tournament.

To reach the semifinal stage, Morocco has beaten European heavyweights Belgium, Spain and Portugal.
They will put their strength to test again today as they face world champion France in the second semi final.

After Morocco defeated Portugal, their head coach Walid Regragui compared his team to “Rocky.”
Speaking after the victory over Portugal, Regragui said the Atlas Lions have made their people and the continent so happy and proud. He boasted that now the world is with Morocco.

Morocco has certainly punched above its weight at Qatar 2022, as no one gave them any chance to progress beyond the group stage.

Thousands of Moroccans live in Doha and thousands more have made the short trip across the Middle East to support their nation, creating a vociferous cheers at every match.

After the win against Portugal, Morocco’s national airline Royal Air Maroc (RAM) said it was offering nearly 30 flights to Doha ahead of the game against France.

Coach Walide Regragui came into the Moroccan national job in August after winning the African Champions League with Wydad Casablanca.

After both Morocco’s wins against Spain and Portugal, players like Achraf Hakimi and Sofiane Boufal have been pictured kissing or dancing with their mothers.

Their presence followed Regragui’s decision to invite players’ families to stay with the team in Doha. Regragui’s own mom has been present throughout the tournament.

Despite the close ties between the nations, Morocco and France have only played five times, with Morocco losing four times and drawing once. Despite missing at least five key players, the French have emerged as strong contenders to retain their title after grinding out a win against England in the quarterfinals.

Kylian Mbappé has once again been the star of the show and the top scorer of the tournament has underlined his position as the replacement to the likes of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as the best player in the world.

But against England, France showed that it has plenty of other threats aside from the Paris Saint-Germain forward. Giroud has had a renaissance this World Cup. After failing to score a single goal in 2018 and with Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema then returning to the team, it looked at one point that Giroud might never play for France again. Since then, he has scored four goals at the World Cup – only one behind Mbappé – and has become France’s all-time record goalscorer.

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