No one can ever over tell a good story; especially when the story is theirs. This story is about an African team success at the global stage. The FIFA World Cup has always been dominated by Latin American and European teams. As football evolved and sports science became important, Europe emerged as the epicentre of football all across the world.
But amongst the domination of Europe, an African State & an Arabic Nation stunned every football fan by reaching the semi-final of the FIFA World Cup 2022. Peter Dury who is known as one of the great commentators and famous for his poetic phrases in between football matches even dedicated one of his quotes for Morocco.
To understand how Morocco achieved this feat we should first look at Morocco’s recruitment strategy of origin players born in Europe. Most of the players who played for Morocco in this World Cup are products of European academies and play for good European Clubs. They have big names such as Ashraf Hakimi, Hakim Ziyech, Amrabat etc. This team is the result of Morocco’s recruitment policy from 2014.
Looking back at history Morocco surprised the world in 1986, when it became the first African country to reach the Round of 16 in the FIFA World Cup. It seems that Morocco has achieved things over time to put African football on the world stage.
In 2022, the Atlas Lions topped the group stage after drawing against Croatia and; defeating mighty Belgium and Canada in their group. In the Round of 16, Morocco beat Enrique’s Spain in a tie-breaker. When everyone had thought Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal would kick them out of the World Cup, once again the whole world was proved wrong. Morocco defeated Portugal by 1 goal and sent Ronaldo out of his probably last World Cup with tears.
Finally, the defending champions, France stopped the Atlas Lions from making it to the final of the World Cup defeating them by 2 goals. Morocco had to be satisfied with a 4th place finish at the World Cup as they lost to Croatia by 2-1 in their battle for third place.
This performance by Morocco will have an impact on the country’s domestic football standards as Brazil went there to play friendlies against Morocco after the World Cup where Morocco got full home support and a packed stadium. The impact will be further on the rise of Morocco’s football culture among common people, sponsorship at the domestic level, and the growth of football in terms of quality within the county.
At present Morocco has become the inspiration for several nations from Africa, Asia, and the Americas. The whole world is focusing and investing more & more in football as it has become the largest global sport. Top countries have already started to prepare for the next World Cup. When countries do well people and players are able to express love and support for their Nations. The hope here is that football becomes a sport that will bring harmony, brotherhood, and happiness through its spirit in the world.