Canada 1 – 2 Morocco
(Group F, Al Thumama Stadium, 01/12/2022)
After two games full of promise and energy Canada were still pointless, and they got off to a terrible start as Ziyech scored a gift of a goal after only 4 minutes, a bad back-pass forced the keeper to come out, and he missed the ball completely Ziyech chipped the ball over him into an empty net.
23 minutes gone and the Atlas Lions scored a great second, Youssef En-Nesyri beat the goalie from distance having gone past 2 defenders.
The Canadians were getting frustrated and got two quick yellow cards
Five minutes before the break Canada pulled one back against the run of play when a cross from the right deflected off a defender and beat the flailing goalie into the net.
On the stroke of half time a great free-kick from Ziyech was put in the net from a great strike by En-Nesyri who celebrated, before it was harshly ruled out for an offside by Aguerd who was allegedly interfering with play.
Canada started the second half on the front foot having the better of the early exchanges. Constant whistling from the partisan Moroccan crowd as the Canadians tried to patiently build an attack, then on 60 minutes a triple change by the Canadians is followed by a double change from Morocco. leaving Ziyech isolated up front.
On the 71st minute the bar and goal line technology saved the Moroccans as Hutchinson headed against the bar and the ball dropped onto the line before it was headed over from a yard out.
A double change on 75mins saw Ziyech subbed and an end to Chelsea interest in the game, Canada still having the better of play.
Morocco requiring just a point were content just to put ten men behind the ball and soak up the Canadian attacks.
The noise level rose as the minutes ticked away until the final whistle sparked Jubilation in the stands and on the pitch as Morocco qualified on top of their group and into the last 16 for the first time since 1986.
Posted by the CSG’s World Cup Willie