Written by on December 14, 2022

The Atlas Lions of Morocco are warming up for a showdown against France, in what could yet be the biggest football match of the North African country’s history.

Morocco has already created history for itself as the first African country to reach the semi-finals of a FIFA World Cup by overcoming Portugal in a pulsating quarter-final clash at the AI Thumama Stadium in Qatar on Saturday the 10th of December thanks to Youssef En-Nesyri 42nd minute header. The loss was particularly painful for Cristiano Ronaldo, who was hoping to bow out of international Football on a high at the biggest stage in Qatar.

Walid Regragui who was appointed as the Moroccan head coach a few months before the Mundial has continued to weather the storm and produce remarkable results over highly ranked footballing nations to reach the semi-finals. Countries Like Belgium, Spain, Canada, and now Portugal have had a taste of the devastating abilities of the North Africans.

Many believe the biggest test yet could be against defending champions, France tonight at the AI Bayt Stadium in Qatar. The Lions are yet to lose any of their matches in Qatar, having topped their group with  7 points and have only conceded a goal in all of their 6 matches so far.

France On the other hand is seeking to make it to the final for the second time in a row, after their heroics that saw them win it eventually the last time in Russia. Kylian Mbappe is in devastating form though, the PSG forward bagging 5 goals already, one better than the four he scored en route to the Le Blue winning the title four years ago. Olivier Giroud, the AC Milan, and French ace man will be looking to add to the four goals he scored in Qatar, a haul that saw him overtake Thiery Henry as the all-time highest goal scorer for France.

Supporters across the world, especially in Africa and the Arab nations will take solace in the fact that the Didier Descamp boys struggled to keep up with the game against England, especially in the second 45 minutes, and had to rely on a slice of luck to book their spot against the Atlas Lions.

Whoever makes it beyond this night in Qatar, will have it all to do against Lionel Messi and Argentina in the final on Sunday. The La Albiceleste had a comfortable semi-final victory over Croatia in the first match last night.

Lionel Messi is seeking to retire from International football on a high, and hoping to equal late Diego Armando Maradona’s heroics in the 1986 FIFA World Cup, the last time Argentina won football’s most coveted trophy.

Whether Africa triumph tonight in the might of Morocco or the French side progresses, only 90 minutes will decide it. 8 PM West African time, the much awaited showdown will commence.

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