Morocco qualifies for the semi-final of world cup

Morocco defeats Portugal to become the first African side to reach the World Cup semi-finals. Morocco pulled off a brave-hearted 1-0 win over Portugal at the Al Thumama Stadium on Saturday.

The Moroccan side outdid Cameroon (1990), Senegal (2002) and Ghana (2010) to enter the last four of the biggest footballing spectacle in the world.

Moroccan players, known as Atlas lions, are celebrated wildly with their fans and posed for a massive post-match photo before starting a lap of honour. There are jubilant scenes as Morocco’s celebrations get started on the pitch as well as in cities in Morocco and elsewhere.

Speaking to journalists after the game. Morocco midfielder Sofyan Amrabat said: “It’s really unbelievable, I’m so proud. It’s like a dream – unbelievable we’re in the semi-final. “We deserve this, 1000%. How we fight, how we play, with our heart for our country for the people – it’s unbelievable. Our spirit, we have injuries, three defenders came in and how they defend, big respect. “It was like we played at home, thank you for all the people.”

Youssef En-Nesyri gifted Morocco the all important goal in the first half, when he out-jumped Portuguese goalkeeper Diogo Costa to nudge in the ball.

Managed by Walid Regragui, Morocco has been rock-solid at the back, with just one goal conceded, an own goal, in the World Cup so far.

In the group stage, Morocco beat 2018 semifinalist Belgium 2-0 and was equal to Spain throughout the round of 16, before trumping its neighbour.

Its win over the 2010 champion was also the first by an African nation through a penalty shootout in the World Cup.