Jakarta (ANTARA) – Morocco advanced to the last 16 of the World Cup for the first time in 36 years after winning 2-1 over Canada in the final Group F match of the Qatar 2022 World Cup, this Thursday evening.
As reported by AFP, goals from Hakim Ziyech and Youssef En-Nesyri ensured the North African side finished top of their group ahead of 2018 World Cup runners-up Croatia, who also qualified for the last 16 after at the same time drawing 0-0 against Belgium.
Morocco, who last reached the knockout stages at the 1986 World Cup will face the Group E runners-up in the last 16, with their opponents set to be known on Friday.
Meanwhile Canada had to end this year’s World Cup on disappointment after losing all three of their group games on their long-awaited return to the finals.
Morocco, which earlier on Sunday beat Belgium 2-0, had drawn enough against Canada to be sure of progress to the last 16.
In the match at the Al Thumama Stadium, Morocco were able to open the scoring when the match had only been running for four minutes.
Also read: Croatia eliminated Belgium from the World Cup after a 0-0 draw
Canadian captain and goalkeeper Milan Borjan raced off the line to clear backpass Steven Vitoria but could only watch as the ball fell to the feet of Morocco’s Hakim Ziyech.
The Chelsea star took advantage of the opportunity to slot the ball into an empty net.
Missing out at the start of the match overwhelmed Canada, while Morocco dominated even more with an additional goal in the 23rd minute.
Right back Achraf Hakimi’s long ball was met by En-Nesyri from behind before tapping in at the near post to beat Borjan.
Canada pulled one back through a rare strike five minutes from halftime when defender Sam Adekugbe slid the ball down the left-hand side of the net and fired in a low cross.
Defender Nayef Aguerd stuck his foot out and the ball swerved past Morocco goalkeeper Yassine Bounou to make it 2-1.
Morocco in the group standings has collected seven points from two wins and one draw, while Croatia is in second place with five points after recording one win and two draws.
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Reporter: Teguh Handoko
Editor: Jafar M Sidik
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