Will Morocco become the first African nation to lift the World Cup? They have already made history in the competition by reaching the semi-finals with a shock win over Portugal.
Morocco are competing in their sixth World Cup, having made it out of the group stages just once in their history prior to Qatar, in 1986. They finished bottom of Group B in 2018, securing a solitary point from their 2-2 draw with Spain.
But have made a considerable impression on the 2022 World Cup so far, reaching the knockouts for only the second time and will now make an unprecedented semi-final appearance after claiming a huge scalps against Spain and Portugal.
Latest Morocco odds to win the World Cup
Morocco started the tournament at 200/1 odds to win World Cup. Now those odds are just a fraction of the previous figure.
|Morocco to win the World Cup
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Morocco route to the World Cup 2022 Final in Qatar
Group stage results
|Morocco 0-0 Croatia
|Al Bayt Stadium
|Belgium 0-2 Morocco
|Al Thumama Stadium
|Canada 1-2 Morocco
|Al Thumama Stadium
Morocco’s road to the semi-finals
With Morocco winning Group F, they faced Spain and Portugal in the last 16 and quarter-finals respectively, and the North African nation stunned the footballing world after eliminating both European heavyweights.
There are no easy semi-finals with reigning champions France awaiting them, before the final offers the prospect of Argentina.
|Route as Group F winners
Morocco World Cup 2022 squad
|Ahmed Reda Tagnaouti
|West Ham United
|Jawad El Yamiq
|Yahia Attiyat Allah
|Bilal El Khannous
Morocco players to watch at this year’s World Cup 2022
Morocco top World Cup Golden Boot contender – Youssef En-Nesyri
The 25-year-old En-Nesyri has cemented his place at Sevilla, a club that is consistently near the top of La Liga and playing European football. Primarily played in a wide position, he has played a little more centrally for his country, and that approach paid dividends against Canada as he opened his World Cup account. En-Nesyri is currently on three goals for the competition, making him his nation’s top World Cup scorer.
Morocco player to watch – Hakim Ziyech
Ziyech hasn’t had the best of times at Stamford Bridge, failing to establish himself as a starter each week, although the huge amount of attacking talent at Chelsea certainly hasn’t helped his cause. He’s, without doubt, the most influential player for The Atlas Lions and this could be his chance to really make his mark on the biggest stage. There’s no doubting his talent and he’s so far impressed in Qatar, playing a key attacking role in helping Morocco top their group and beat Spain.
He, like En-Nesyri, opened his World Cup account against Canada, taking less than five minutes to break the deadlock after Milan Borjan’s wayward touch fell straight into his path, which led to him uncorking from range. Ziyech has had a strong track record of scoring goals in his career, but with a moniker like “The Wizard”, it’s clear where his true talents lie. A twinkle-toed operator, Ziyech’s unpredictability and flair have given Morocco an extra dimension in Qatar.
Morocco emerging player to look out for – Sofyan Amrabat
At 26, Sofyan Amrabat certainly isn’t an emerging star, but pre-World Cup he was by no means a household name on these shores. An excellent operator for Fiorentina, who was the subject of interest from Tottenham back in January, Amrabat has been one of the standout players in Qatar and is now being linked with just about every major European club worth their salt.
The younger brother of former Watford winger Nordin, football talent runs in the family, and he has been showcasing that point on the Persian Gulf, with his tenacity, midfield drive and energy all key components of Walid Regragui’s well-oiled engine room.
Clubs lining up for his signature this winter window will be nudging their way to the front of the queue, but his agent, Alberto Maria Jimmy Fontana, has recently downplayed the chances of him leaving Tuscany next month.
“Fiorentina are enjoying his qualities now, given that last year [his position] was a bit covered by Lucas Torreira,” he told Radio Sportiva.
“We have received many phone calls for him, but we respect the choices Fiorentina are making. They decided to bet on him and not to redeem Torreira, even if they could have played together. The calls are nice, but we have an excellent relationship with Fiorentina, in addition to the long contract that binds him to the Viola.
“Despite playing in a lower European competition (Europa Conference League), they are a very respectable club.”
Morocco tactical analysis & formation at the World Cup
Morocco line up with plenty of bodies in midfield, allowing their flair players ample room to get up the pitch and have an impact in the final third. The formation most closely resembles a 4-1-4-1 or 4-3-3, but things will be very fluid for the likes of Ziyech, Sofiane Boufal and En-Nesyri in attack.
Amrabat — as touched on — offers a stable presence in the defensive midfield position and this has been crucial to Morocco’s success in Qatar. Two attacking full backs on the books at Bayern Munich and PSG, respectively, Noussair Mazraoui and Achraf Hakimi certainly don’t lack pedigree and provide plenty of width for the side, with the likes of Ziyech and Boufal given the freedom to move inside into more dangerous areas.
Where are Morocco in the Fifa world rankings?
Morocco are currently 22nd in the world rankings, moving up from 23rd in October following a decent run in the African Cup of Nations.
Who is the Morocco manager?
Walid Regragui is the Morocco manager and has been since replacing Vahid Halilhodzic in August 2022.
Who is the current Morocco captain?
Romain Saiss is the Morocco captain and Premier League fans will be familiar with the centre back following his 176 appearances for Wolverhampton Wanderers before his move to Besiktas in June 2022.
How many times have Morocco won the World Cup?
Morocco have won the African Cup of Nations on one occasion but they have never won the World Cup. Their best-ever finish (before 2022) came in 1986 when they reached the Round of 16, winning their group ahead of England, Poland and Portugal.
How many times have Morocco competed in the World Cup?
This is Morocco’s sixth appearance at the World Cup, and just the second time they have been in back-to-back tournaments after 1994 and 1998.
Who has scored Morocco most goals in World Cup tournaments?
Three players have scored two goals for Morocco at the World Cup: Abderrazak Khairi (1986), Salaheddine Bassir and Abdeljalil Haada (both 1998), but Youssef En-Nesyri recently bagged his third to claim the outright milestone. He is also the first Moroccan player to score at multiple World Cups (2018 and 2022).
Which player from Morocco has the most World Cup appearances?
Mustapha Hadji had made more appearances than any other Moroccan player, playing six times across two tournaments. He was recently surpassed, though, by Achraf Hakimi and Hakim Ziyech, who are now on eight and seven appearances respectively.