MX23RW : Tuesday, February 27 00:25:50| >> :600:1576039:1576039:
[monks data]
Belgium national football team
World Cup | Group Stage
Nov 27, 2022 at 1pm UK
Morocco national football team
0 - 2

Onana (29')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Saiss (73'), Aboukhlal (90+2')
Sabiri (90+5')

Morocco stun Belgium with deserved win at World Cup

Morocco stun Belgium with deserved win at World Cup
© Reuters
Morocco record a 2-0 win over Belgium in Sunday's World Cup fixture at the Al Thumama Stadium to move to the top of Group F.

Morocco have recorded a deserved 2-0 win over Belgium to move to the top of Group F and leave their opponents battling to remain in the World Cup.

While the entire 90 minutes at the Al Thumama Stadium were competitive, Morocco overcame a slow start to create the better moments in the final third, and strikes from Abdelhamid Sabiri and Zakaria Aboukhial earned the Atlas Lions just their third victory in the history of this tournament.

While Morocco now sit in first spot with four points, only behind Croatia on goal difference, Belgium have been left with work to do to qualify for the last 16, needing to defeat Croatia on Thursday unless Morocco lose to already-eliminated Canada.

Belgium also miss out on a record-equalling 16th successive match without defeat in the group stages of this competition, this setback representing their first loss since the 1994 edition.

Belgium and Morocco in action at the World Cup on November 27, 2022.© Reuters

Unlike in their previous match against Canada, Belgium showcased their talent during the early stages with Michy Batshuayi completing a free-flowing team move with a shot which was diverted behind by Munir Mohamedi.

Belgium's dominance continued without the Red Devils creating clear-cut chances, although Amadou Onana should have done better with a header after beating Mohamedi to a corner.

Morocco finally laid a glove on their opponents just after the 20-minute mark, Hakim Ziyech sending a swerving effort from distance marginally over the crossbar.

As the first half progressed, Morocco were becoming the more threatening team, although Achraf Hakimi failed to take advantage of finding space in the penalty area by lashing a shot well off target.

An aerial shot of Morocco's disallowed goal against Belgium in their World Cup game on November 27, 2022.© Reuters

Walid Regragui's side thought they had taken the lead with the final action of the opening 45 minutes when Ziyech's free kick evaded everyone and was diverted into the net by Thibaut Courtois.

However, Romain Saiss, despite not touching the ball, was marginally offside and impacted the situation by running across Courtois's line of sight, leading to the goal being chalked off.

Both nations showed intent after the restart, Ziyech initially bringing a routine save out of Courtois before Eden Hazard created a chance for himself on the right-hand side of the penalty area before forcing Mohamedi into a save at his near post.

Back up the other end, Sofiane Boufal was the next to go close, just failing to get enough curl on his effort aimed for the far corner, while Dries Mertens should perhaps have done better with a shot from 20 yards shortly after being introduced as a substitute.

Morocco's Abdelhamid Sabiri scores against Belgium in their World Cup game on November 27, 2022.© Reuters

The deadlock was finally broken with 16 minutes remaining, and in similar circumstances to the earlier disallowed goal. On this occasion, Saiss remained onside before moving across Courtois, and Abdelhamid Sabiri's cross-come-shot was able to head straight into the far corner.

In response, Roberto Martinez introduced Romelu Lukaku into the action ahead of his previously-planned return date from injury, but it was a header from Jan Vertonghen which almost brought Belgium level, the ball bouncing narrowly wide of the far post.

As Belgium pushed men forward, more space opened up at the other end of the pitch, and the African nation exploited that with a match-clinching second in added-on time.

Tremendous work from Ziyech created space for himself inside the area and after pulling the ball back for Zakaria Aboukhlal, the substitute did the rest with a first-time finish into the roof of Courtois's net, sparking jubilant scenes on the pitch and in the stands.

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Belgium players pose for a team group photo before the match on September 22, 2022
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Group A

Q Netherlands Netherlands32107
Q Senegal flag Senegal32016
3 Ecuador flag Ecuador31114
4 Qatar Qatar30030

Group B

Q England flag England32107
Q United States USA31205
3 Iran Iran31023
4 Wales flag Wales30121

Group C

Q Argentina Argentina32016
Q Poland Poland31114
3 Mexico Mexico31114
4 Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia31023

Group D

Q France France32016
Q Australia Australia32016
3 Tunisia Tunisia31114
4 Denmark Denmark30121

Group E

Q Japan Japan32016
Q Spain Spain31114
3 Germany Germany31114
4 Costa Rica flag Costa Rica31023

Group F

Q Morocco Morocco32107
Q Croatia Croatia31205
3 Belgium Belgium31114
4 Canada Canada30030

Group G

Q Brazil Brazil32016
Q Switzerland Switzerland32016
3 Cameroon flag Cameroon31114
4 Serbia Serbia30121

Group H

Q Portugal Portugal32016
Q Republic of Korea South Korea31114
3 Uruguay flag Uruguay31114
4 Ghana flag Ghana31023

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