Morocco, ranked 22nd in FIFA rankings, produced the third surprise at the World Cup in Qatar

Morocco, the ‘Ambush in Africa’, produced another surprise at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Morocco, ranked 22nd in FIFA rankings, defeated Belgium, ranked 2nd in FIFA rankings, 2-0 in the second leg of the Qatar World Cup Group F group stage held at Assumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar on the night of the 27th.

Morocco will produce the third surprise in this tournament, following Saudi Arabia, which defeated Argentina, and Japan, which defeated Germany.

Morocco, who had 1 win, 1 draw and 4 points, had the same points as Croatia (1 win, 1 draw, 4 points), who won 4-1 in the same group match between Croatia and Canada, but the goal difference (Croatia +3, Morocco +2) and finished second in the group.

Belgium, who finished third at the World Cup in Russia four years ago, gave up two goals in the second half to Morocco, armed with solid defense and quick, sharp attacks.

Morocco, who recorded only two draws and two losses in the World Cup finals since defeating Scotland 3-0 in the third group match of the 1998 French tournament, added a valuable victory in 24 years.

Morocco was far behind Belgium (61%) in possession of the ball in the first half with 27%, but foreshadowed a change by directing several threatening scenes.

In the 18th minute of the first half, Amadu Onana’s header went over the net from a corner kick in the 18th minute of the first half, and in the 2nd minute, Thomas Meunir’s right-footed shot from outside the left side of the penalty box went straight to the goalkeeper.

On the other hand, Morocco, which focused on defense, used a quick counterattack to counterattack. Hakim Ziyasi’s left-footed mid-range shot in the 21st minute and Ashraf Hakimi’s right-footed strong shot followed by an overlapping right-footed shot in the 35th minute thrilled Belgium.

Morocco’s Jiyasi opened the goal with a left-footed strong shot from a free kick chance from the right side of Belgium’s goal in the extra time of the first half, but it was disappointing as it was declared offside by video review (VAR).

Morocco, who had been in a tight match against ‘strong’ Belgium in the second half, scored the opening goal that broke the balance in the 28th minute of the second half.

Abdulhamid Sabiri kicked a free kick from the right square area of ​​the Belgian goal with his right foot low and fast.

With 9 minutes left at the end of the second half when Belgium was trailing 0-1, striker Romelu Lukaku, who had been on the bench due to hamstring pain, put in an all-out battle, but was hit with a key goal in extra time in the second half.

In the 47th minute of the second half, Morocco broke Belgium’s will to pursue with Zakariya Abuhalal’s key goal after receiving a sharp pass from Ziyasi, who quickly dug into the left side of the penalty box.

Croatia gave up the lead to Canada’s Alfonso Davies in the 2nd minute, but Andrei Kramaric’s multi-goal and Marco Ribaya’s and Lobro Mayer’s additional goals gave Canada a 4-1 lead.

Meanwhile, in ‘Group of Death’ Group E, ‘Invincible Armada’ Spain and ‘Tank Corps’ Germany recorded a 1-1 draw.

Spain took the lead with Alvaro Morata’s opening goal in the 17th minute of the second half, but in the 38th minute of the second half, Niklas Fulkruq scored an equalizer, delaying the confirmation of the round of 16.

In the previous match between Japan and Costa Rica, Costa Rica won 1-0 thanks to Kaycher Fuller’s winning goal in the 36th minute of the second half.

In Group E, Spain (1 win, 1 draw, 4 points) is leading, with Japan, Costa Rica (above 1 win, 1 loss, 3 points, goal difference), and Germany (1 draw, 1 loss, 1 point). are following

[ 경기신문 = 정민수 기자 ]

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