facing Spain, Morocco has an appointment in its history

hot in the front

Morocco-Spain and Portugal-Switzerland

Moroccan Youssef En-Nesyri celebrates his own goal during the World Cup match against Canada, Thursday, December 1, 2022, in Doha (Qatar).  The Sevilla FC striker is one of four Moroccan players playing in the Spanish league.

Thirty-six years later, the Moroccan national team is back in the round of 16 of a World Cup. At that time, in 1986, the Atlas Lions stopped at this stage of the competition against West Germany, the future finalist of the Mexican tournament; the fault of a direct free kick scored by Lothar Matthaus at the very end of the match (1-0 loss).

This year, the players of Walid Regragui are against Spain, a selection that owes part of its qualification to the victory of… Germany against Costa Rica, on the last day of group E. I hope we can make a surprise”, said the Atlas Lions coach in a press conference. With his players, winners of Belgium and Canada in the first round, he wanted to include the following mantra: “No complications, no regrets, and playing football. »

Also read: Articles are reserved for our subscribers Canada – Morocco: Walid Regragui, the new nail of the Atlas Lions

Tuesday, December 6, Morocco will not be the only national team that will have the opportunity to dust off the history books. Since 1954 and the edition of the World Cup within its borders, Switzerland has not won a knockout match in the World Cup. Against Portugal in the round of 16, Nati has arguments to finally achieve it.

At the end of the first round (victory against Cameroon and Serbia, narrow defeat against Brazil), the results were promising. “We can beat Portugal”said coach Murat Yakin, in a press conference… After all, didn’t he announce before the tournament that the 26 Swiss players present in Qatar were formed. “the best Swiss national team ever” ?

Also read: 2022 World Cup: Morocco-Spain, a derby-like round of 16

The winners of the last two rounds of 16 of the World Cup will meet in the quarterfinals on Saturday, December 10, at 4 pm in Doha.

full throttle

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Croatian goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic blocks a shot by Japanese Kaoru Mitoma, during the round of 16 of the World Cup between their countries, Monday, December 5, 2022, at Al-Janoub Stadium, Al-Wakrah .

After stopping three of four Japanese attempts in the World Cup round of 16 penalty shootout between Croatia and Japan, Monday, December 5, Croatian goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic was celebrated as a hero by his teammates ( 3-1 victory on penalties). with the goal after the score was 1-1 after extra time). He first dived to his left to escape Takumi Minamino’s shot, then to the right against Kaoru Mitoma and to the right again in front of Maya Yoshida.

At 27, the one who plays for a club in Dinamo Zagreb and honors his 37e The selection against Japan undoubtedly experienced the most emotional moment of his career. “It was a very demanding match, we had to fight. In the most difficult moment, we were able to mobilize our forces and win”rejoiced at the end of the meeting the goalkeeper, who stopped studying international relations to devote himself to football.

His predecessor, under whom he was an understudy, Danijel Subasic, should be appreciated as a connoisseur. In 2018, in Russia, the former AS Monaco goalkeeper won from two penalty shootouts.


“Mbappe? It’s the fastest thing I’ve ever seen. »

Kylian Mbappé (left) in a duel with Matthew Cash during the France-Poland World Cup match, Sunday, December 4, 2022, at the Al-Thumama Stadium, in Doha.

In his two-and-a-half seasons in the English championship’s elite, right-back Matthew Cash has had the chance to see some of the world’s greatest players, some cars too. But he has never suffered as much as this Sunday, December 4, in the round of 16 of the World Cup.

Naturalized Polish in the fall of 2021, through his maternal ancestry, the player of the Aston Villa club had the mission, during the France-Poland, to score Kylian Mbappé in his pants.

Also read: Articles are reserved for our subscribers With the Mbappé-Giroud duo, France is very grateful against Poland

Conscientious, the player of Bialo-Czerwoni (the “white and red”) spent the whole afternoon before the match watching a video montage, made for the occasion, of the actions of the tricolor world champion… We know the continuation : 3-1 victory for the Blues with a double from Kylian Mbappé. “I knew the game was going to be tough, but when he got the ball, stopped and went, it was the fastest thing I’ve ever seen.”said Matthew Cash according to Guardian.

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Peeled in mind

A photo of Pelé is shown in a fan zone before the World Cup match between Brazil and South Korea, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Doha (Qatar).

The true legend of football, the Brazilian Pelé was hospitalized last week at the age of 82 due to a lung infection caused by Covid-19. The state of health of the triple world champion (in 1958, 1962 and 1970) worries the world of football.

On Monday, a photo of Edson Arantes do Nascimento aka Pelé was displayed in a fan zone in Doha, Qatar. In black and white, the drawing honors the legend in his Santos FC jersey, the Brazilian club where he spent most of his career. In the background, we see the yellow and green selection line auriverde.

Also read: Brazil – South Korea: Neymar and the Seleçao entered the quarter-finals effortlessly

That same day, Pelé – or his entourage – continued Twitter a message to the Seleçao, confirming this “will see[t] the game” between Brazil and South Korea from Sao Paulo Hospital and “support[t] each one of you [ses joueurs] ». It has to be filled with the Brazilian samba offered by Neymar, Richarlison and others at the 974 stadium.

Grain of sand


When the moment of truth comes, the Vatreni want to prolong the pleasure. Sports statistics firm Opta reported that in their last eight matches in the knockout stage of the major competition, the Croatian national team went into extra time seven times. The series started at Euro 2008, during the quarter-final with an epic outcome, finally lost to sanctions in Turkey. It continued on Monday in the round of 16 of the World Cup, this time winning after a fatal event against Japan.

What is the only time Croatia has played a major draw in a major competition without going to extra time in the last two decades? It was at the Luzhniki stadium in Moscow, in the last defeat against France, on July 15, 2018. The previous one started in the summer… 1998, against the Blues, again, and a certain Lilian Thuram.

A patch of blue sky

Day of rest, barbecue and visiting a wounded man

In Doha, the players of the French team tasted the joy of a day off after qualifying against Poland. No press conference therefore, even though we already know that the new holder of the record of selection goals, Olivier Giroud will be in front of the microphones and the cameras, Tuesday.

The opportunity to ask him, perhaps, how one covers a day “off” during the World Cup, even the magnificent and large swimming pool of their five stars can be considered. The team indicates that our French organized a barbecue (but did not invite the Argentines to open the meat) with a little music for the atmosphere. The daily also informs that one of the many injured, Presnel Kimpembe was present on Sunday night to celebrate the qualification as well as the families of the players, who were allowed to stay until Tuesday morning.

Our selection of 2022 World Cup articles

Find all our content on the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, from November 20 to December 18.

  • Find out all: The calendar, the results, the rankings, the “unofficial” guide to the 2022 World Cup
  • Investigations: France-Qatar, a friendship full of resources; Award of the World Cup in Qatar: Sarkozy, Platini and the takeover of PSG amid the investigation of French justice; For the environment, an event at a critical stage
  • Report : With the Mbappé-Giroud duo, France is very grateful against Poland
  • Editorials: The World Cup of excess; FIFA in the stage of blindness
  • Decryptions: The delicate speech of football players about human rights; The reasons for the discomfort; A very political “World Cup”
  • Reports: In Qatar’s “engine room”, where immigrant workers live that Doha does not want to see; In Qatar, a pan-Arab festival atmosphere; At the University of Dakar, “when Senegal plays, we forget all our problems”
  • Grandstand (Agnes Callamard, Amnesty International) : “By calling ‘focus on football’, Gianni Infantino is trying to absolve FIFA of any responsibility”
  • Pictures: Walid Regragui, the new signing of the Atlas Lions; Harry Maguire, a definitive idea of ​​English football
  • Chronicle: “Changing the way extra time is calculated in a match risks breaking the game”; “In video refereeing, goals are conditional, so are emotions”
  • Podcast: Ecology, human rights, corruption: why the 2022 World Cup in Qatar is a problem
  • Video: A “carbon neutral” World Cup? What is behind Qatar’s promises; For the first time, a match will be refereed by women

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