From the grocery world champion to the performance of the “Atlas Lions” in the World Cup in Qatar…an exceptional, historic year for Moroccan sport | sport

Morocco’s progress to the semi-finals of the World Cup in Qatar – in an unprecedented Arab and African feat – capped off an exceptional year for Moroccan football, which also saw Moroccan clubs dominate the game in continental competitions, and Moroccan excellence was not limited to just football, but also reached athletics, golf and sports. Another one, where Moroccan champions achieved unprecedented achievements, the year 2022 made a record of gold in the history of Moroccan sports.

Historic qualification for the semi-finals of the World Cup Qatar

Morocco wrote an illustrious history in its participation in the World Cup after becoming the first African and Arab team to reach the Golden Square, despite injuries, to finish its sixth participation in the finals in fourth place .

Before that, Morocco became the first team from Africa and the Arab world to qualify for the round of 16, leading its strong group, which included Croatia, Belgium and Canada, with a total of 7 points.

The Moroccan national team, led by coach Walid Regraki, who took over as successor to Waheed Khalilujic just two months before the start of the competitions, drew goalless with Croatia, the runners-up of the 2018 edition, before losing 2-0 won against Belgium. and 2-1 against Canada at the end of the group stage.

Morocco’s national team marks its historic participation in the World Cup in Qatar (French)

Morocco’s national team continued to shine, winning the last prize round against Spain 3-1 on penalties, in light of the brilliance of goalkeeper Yassine Bounou after the end of the original and extra time in a goalless draw.

Then the “Atlas Lions” defeated Portugal 1-0 in the quarter-finals, with a header from Youssef Nsiri.

The Moroccan national team was affected by the many injuries and fatigue in losing 2-0 to France in the semi-final, during which the Football Association protested what it considered to be refereeing errors while demanding two penalties, so the team-mates of captain Roman Sayes finished fourth after losing 2-1 to Croatia.

The Moroccan national team received a legendary royal and popular welcome upon its return to Rabat, and King Mohammed VI honored the mission of the Moroccan national team with royal decorations, in addition to officials from the Moroccan Federation for the game.

With this historic achievement, the Moroccan national team topped the ranking of African teams for the month of December, ahead of Senegal, jumping 11 places to become 11th in the world in the FIFA classification, and is on the verge of breaking into the top ten .

Moroccan clubs dominate Africa

In addition to the performance of the Moroccan national team, Wydad played in the domestic league after winning the African Champions League for the third time at the expense of Al-Ahly of Egypt with 2-0, and Nahdet Berkane won the Confederations Cup for the second time won. time in its history after winning a penalty shootout against Orlando Pirates of South Africa.

Nahdet Berkane achieved a historic hat-trick after winning the African Super Cup for the first time in its history by defeating compatriot Wydad.

CAF Champions League - Final - Al-Ahly v Wydad Casablanca
Morocco’s Wydad won the African Champions League at the expense of Egypt’s Al-Ahly (Reuters)

In addition to the clubs, the Moroccan national futsal team continued to shine after winning the Arab Cup for the second time in its history, held in Saudi Arabia, where it won the last match against the Iraqi national team , and then for the first time to win the Confederations Cup in Thailand after a historic victory in the final against Iran. .

Moroccan brilliance Bennoun women

The brilliance was not only limited to men, but mathematics also had its fair share of brilliance as the Moroccan women’s team finished second in the Africa Cup of Nations, losing 1-2 to South Africa in the final match has.

By reaching the final, the “Atlas Lionesses” secured their qualification for the 2023 World Cup finals in Australia and New Zealand for the first time.

Morocco’s U-17 women’s national team also participated in the 2022 World Cup in India for the first time.

At women’s club level, the FAR Women’s Football Team were crowned the CAF Champions League title after defeating defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns, South Africa.

The grocer is the world champion

Morocco’s Soufiane El-Bakali became the first runner from outside Kenya to combine the World Championship and Olympic titles after winning the gold medal in the 3,000 meters steeplechase at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon, USA.

Al-Baqali (26) won the gold medal at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.

Athletics – Olympic Games: Day 10
Moroccan Olympic champion Sofiane El Bakkali (Getty Images)

Al-Baqali finished the race in 8 minutes and 25.13 seconds, beating Ethiopian Lamitcha Girma, who settled again with silver after the Tokyo Olympics and the World Championships in Doha 3 years ago.

After this achievement, Al-Baqali, from the city of Fez, was chosen as the best runner in Africa for the year 2022.

Other sports are glowing

The Moroccan national handball team has qualified for the 2023 World Championships in Sweden and Poland for the eighth time, after finishing third in the 2022 African Championship in Egypt.

The draw for the World Handball Championship has placed Morocco in a strong group that includes Egypt, Croatia and the United States.

In golf, the Moroccan national team was crowned for the first time in its history with the African Junior and Junior Golf Championship last October in El Gouna, Egypt, where the team consisting of Mahdi Al-Fakouri, Adam Bresno, Nizar Bourhim and Sofiane Dahman succeeded to outperform the South African team.

In the sport itself, Ines Laglache became the first Moroccan, Arab and North African female athlete to win the French Open golf title on the European Tour.

In beach volleyball, Morocco’s men’s and women’s teams qualified for the World Championship in Mexico after winning the continental title.

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