France will advance to the FIFA World Cup final after beating Morocco 2-0 during Wednesday’s semi-final game.
The Moroccan football team made history by becoming the first-ever African team to reach the World Cup semi-finals. Morocco’s loss to France, however, means that the team’s odds-defying World Cup journey is at an end.
France is set to take on Argentina in the finals on Sunday, December 18th. The French team claimed its second-ever World Cup victory at the last tournament in 2018.
France vs. Morocco
The semi-finals match was off to a good start for the French side with a goal by Theo Hernandez just five minutes into the game.
The Moroccan team was not dispirited and continued to test France throughout the game despite a poor start and several problems with injured players. Morocco had a higher rate of possession at 62 percent versus France at 38 percent.
The French football team entered the match expecting a tough game. “When a team is capable of beating Belgium, Spain and Portugal, and finish[es] top of [its] group, it is because [it has] lots of quality on the field and undoubtedly off it too, in terms of cohesion and team spirit,” France captain Hugo Lloris said before the game.
“They will be formidable opponents,” the French football team’s captain added.
However, France seized a definitive win at the Al Bayt Stadium in Qatar with a second goal, just eleven minutes from time. Randal Kolo Muani, who was substituted in, tidily scored the goal with a shot at the back post.
Morocco’s surprising World Cup journey
Despite Morocco’s loss on Wednesday, the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar will likely not be forgotten anytime soon in the North African country. The team performed remarkably well, defying the expectations of many pundits.
Morocco’s wins over Belgium, Spain, and Portugal were unexpected twists in what has been an eventful World Cup. The three European teams are placed second, seventh, and ninth according to FIFA’s rankings. Meanwhile, Morocco is ranked twenty-second.
The Moroccan team became especially popular with local football fans in Qatar, winning over many new followers.
Morocco have gained new fans from various countries on their incredible World Cup run.
Can they go one step further tonight? 🇲🇦 pic.twitter.com/DKdLWkkC2I
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) December 14, 2022
World Cup finals: France vs. Argentina
Having beaten Morocco, France will face one final test by Argentina. If France wins on Sunday, it will be the first team to win back-to-back World Cup tournaments since Brazil’s accomplishment in 1962 and 1958 sixty years ago.
The bookies currently favor France but only by a small margin. Argentina is a formidable team and the upcoming final could be hotly contested. The Argentinian team will be confident after thrashing Croatia 3-0 on Tuesday.
It has been thirty-six years since Argentina last won the World Cup back in 1986. The pressure will be on for the highly-ranked team to bring home the trophy.
At the same time, thirty-five-year-old star-player Lionel Messi has confirmed that Sunday’s match will be the last ever game he plays for his country. Messi, who is widely considered to be the best football player in the world, will no doubt be striving to seize a World Cup win in his final national game.
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