World Cup Group F: Morocco stun Belgium 2-0

Belgium Morocco
Morocco’s Abdelhamid Sabiri, not in the frame, scores his side’s first goal during the World Cup group F soccer match between Belgium and Morocco, at the Al Thumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

Kevin De Bruyne saw the writing on the wall when he said Belgium had “no chance” of winning the World Cup because two matches in, they look nothing like the side that finished third in 2018 in Russia. 

After just squeaking by in a rather undeserved 1-0 victory against Canada, Belgium was beaten by Morocco 2-0 on Sunday afternoon to leave Group F open for anyone heading into the final matchday. 

Abdelhamid Sabiri’s wicked free kick in the 73rd minute from a difficult-angled free kick parallel to the left goal line befuddled the Belgian defense and goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois — who had to try and come back to his goal line after wandering out in anticipation of a cross toward the middle of the box.

Zakaria Aboukhlal, a substitute who came on in the 73rd minute, finished it off for the Moroccans by finishing off a stellar move on the counter-attack which saw him pop a chance over Courtois and into the roof of the net to start the party for the underdogs.

It’s their first win at a World Cup since defeating Scotland at the 1998 tournament.

Belgium looked its best and most dangerous at the jump, controlling play early that led to a Michy Bachuyai shot from the left of the box that was turned away by Monir El Kajoui. 

That was as good as it would get for Belgium, which could not find a way to break down a sound Moroccon defense that provided the platform for the country’s historic day. The Atlas Lions have not conceded a goal in their last five matches including two straight now in Qatar.

Morocco had a goal wiped away in the second minute of first-half stoppage time after Romain Saiss was deemed offside after flicking in a free kick from Hakim Ziyech. 

With their third-ever win at the World Cup, Morocco temporarily moves to the top of Group F with Croatia and Canada still to play on Sunday.

For more on Morocco, Belgium, and the World Cup, visit AMNY.com

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