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Morocco roar past Canada to the World Cup
Morocco roar past Canada to the World Cup
Morocco roar past Canada to the World Cup

International

Morocco roar past Canada to the World Cup

Morocco advances to the World Cup quarterfinals for the first time in 36 years after defeating Canada 2-1.

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Morocco advanced to the World Cup last 16 for the first time in 36 years on Thursday. Defeating eliminated Canada 2-1.

The North Africans finished first in Group F. Ahead of 2018 World Cup runners-up Croatia, thanks to goals from Hakim Ziyech and Youssef En-Nesyri.

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Morocco, who last advanced to the World Cup knockout stages in 1986. Will face the Group E runners-up in the last 16. With the identity of their opponents to be determined later Thursday.

Meanwhile, Canada’s defeat capped off a disappointing World Cup for the CONCACAF team. Which exited after losing all three of their group games on their long-awaited return to the finals.

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Second round after defeating Belgium

Morocco advanced to the second round after defeating Belgium 2-0 on Sunday. Leaving them needing only a point against Canada on Thursday to ensure their place.

That goal was never in doubt after the Moroccans took the lead after only four minutes. In front of 43,102 fans at the Al-Thumama Stadium.

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Milan Borjan, Canada’s captain and goalkeeper. Raced off his line to clear an underhit backpass from Steven Vitoria. But could only watch in horror as the ball fell to Ziyech of Morocco.

The Chelsea star made the most of the opportunity. Calmly lifting a finish over the stranded Borjan into the empty net for 1-0.

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That early setback exhausted Canada, which struggled to gain a foothold against a rampant Morocco, which was soon 2-0 up.

Morocco roar past Canada to the World Cup
Morocco roar past Canada to the World Cup

Achraf Hakimi’s long ball caught the Canadian defence off guard. And En-Nesyri darted in behind before smashing home a near-post finish to beat Borjan.

Five minutes before halftime. Canada scored on a rare foray forward when defender Sam Adekugbe skipped clear down the left and rifled in a low cross.

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To make it 2-1, defender Nayef Aguerd stuck his leg out and the ball deflected into the net past Morocco goalkeeper Yassine Bounou.

Two-goal lead in first-half

Morocco thought they had restored their two-goal lead in first-half stoppage time when En-Nesyri lashed home from eight yards out, but the effort was ruled offside.

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Canada began the second half strongly, with Alphonso Davies shooting just wide after a promising attack.

Morocco, on the other hand, dropped deeper, and Canada lacked the inventiveness to seriously threaten.

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On 71 minutes, substitute Atiba Hutchinson’s header from a corner crashed off the underside of the crossbar and bounced off the goal line, giving them their best chance to draw level.

Full-back Alistair Johnston was unable to control the rebound, allowing Morocco to maintain its lead.

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Canada captain Borjan almost got caught out again in another risky advance in injury time, but Davies was there to snuff it out before Morocco’s raucous fans erupted in celebration at the whistle.

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