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World Cup: Morocco reach last 16 for first time since 1986 as Belgium crash out

World Cup: Morocco reach last 16 for first time since 1986 as Belgium crash out
December 01
18:42 2022

Morocco defeated Canada 2-1 in their final group game of this year’s World Cup on Thursday to qualify for the round of 16.

First-half goals from Hakim Ziyech and Youssef En-Nesyri helped the Atlas Lions overcome a stubborn Canada side to top Group F following Croatia’s goalless draw with Belgium who crashed out of the tournament.

A poor pass from Canada’s goalkeeper led to Ziyech lobbing the ball into an unguarded net on four minutes before En-Nesyri doubled their lead with a well-taken strike on 23 minutes.

Canada pulled one back via own goal on 40 minutes but Morocco held on despite Canada’s valiant effort to find an equalizer.

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Unbeaten Morocco finished the group with seven points from the three matches, two points ahead of Croatia who qualified for the knockout stage alongside the Northern African side.

Morocco join Senegal to become the second African nation into the knockout stage at Qatar 2022.

It is also the first time in 36 years Morocco would qualify for the round of 16, and only the second time in their World Cup history.

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Both Morocco and Croatia await their opponents from Group E.

RESULTS

  • Canada 1-2 Morocco
  • Croatia 0-0 Belgium

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