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Wydad win a boost for Moroccan football

Football
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Ayoub El Kaabi nets hat-trick as Morocco down Guinea

Ayoub El Kaabi netted an excellent hat-trick as African Nations Championship hosts Morocco beat Guinea 3-1 to make it two wins out of two.

The West Africans, who are starting at an early elimination after suffering consecutive defeats, matched the Atlas Lions blow for blow during the first half, before a critical error from Aboubaca Camara allowed Morocco to take a second-half lead.

The hosts overcame the loss of influential playmaker Abdelilah Hafidi to injury in the 15th minute to draw first blood...

Morocco spoilt for choice despite frustrating CHAN opener

Morocco won their African Nations Championship opener against Mauritania 4-0 on Saturday, and while the scoreline doesn't flatter the hosts, it doesn't tell the story of a frustrating encounter.

The Atlas Lions were made to wait until the 66th minute before making the breakthrough, as a combination of profligate finishing, stubborn defending and heroic goalkeeper kept them at bay and ensured for a testing opening hour.

Indeed, the Casablanca crowd's patience had begun to wear thin by the time that...

Saidi acknowledges Moroccan nerves in CHAN opener

Morocco midfielder Salaheddine Saidi has acknowledged that the African Nations Championship hosts felt the pressure during a frustrating first-half display in their tournament opener against Mauritania.

The Atlas Lions ultimately romped to a 4-0 victory after an excellent second-half showing, but despite their utter dominance, had to contend with growing frustration from the crowd in Casablanca before Ayoub El Kaabi broke the deadlock in the 66th minute.

"It's normal [that there's a bit of apprehension],"...

Hosts Morocco kick off CHAN campaign with Mauritania victory

Ayoub El Kaabi scored twice while Ismail El Haddad and Achraf Bencharki also found the net as rampant Morocco broke Mauritania's bold resolve to begin their African Nations Championship campaign with a convincing 4-0 win on home soil.

Despite their overwhelming dominance, the hosts had been frustrated by Mauritania and a series of heroic stops by goalkeeper Souleymane Brahim before El Kaabi, reacting quickest to Ismail Haddad's delicious through ball, finished calmly to break the deadlock in the...

Morocco's renaissance continues with CHAN 2018

Three years ago, Morocco ought to have been preparing to host the African Cup of Nations, but the country's refusal to continue as organisers in light of the Ebola virus precipitated a downturn from which they are only now picking themselves up.

Equatorial Guinea duly stepped in as last-minute tournament organisers, while Morocco - as punishment by the Confederation of African Football - were slapped with an initial $1 million fine and banned from competing in the next two editions of the AFCON.

Fast...