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World Cup: The Moroccan dream ends, loses 0-2 to France in semi final

Moroccan players   -  
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AP Photo


Disappointment for Morocco as their historic World Cup dream comes to an end. The North Africans lost 0-2 to France, Wednesday evening at theAl Bayt Stadiumin the semi final of the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The Atlas Lions dream began to crumble so fast and early on when French defender Theo Hernandez slotted home a loose ball from some attacking pressure. But with the likes Achraf Hakimi, Ziyech and Abderrazak Hamdallah pushing, the history making lions continued to chase for a comeback, hitting the woodwork by the end of the first half.

Morocco returned to the match in the second half dominating possession and completely on top of the game. An equalizer seemed imminent. But they were once again denied one,  when El Yamiq's overhead acrobatic effort hit the wood work.

France had to dig deep, often relying on the counter attack. In the 79th minute, the Les Blues punished the Lions for missed chances when substitute Randal Kolo Muani pounced on a deflected shot from the brilliant Kylian Mbappe. 

It was enough to drown the hopes of Moroccan players who wore long downcast faces at the sight of the goal. For France, who for the most part of the second period looked a shadow of themselves, this was relief and a booking for a successive back to back place in the final. 

In doing so, the much experienced Les Blues put to end the African and Arab dream. 

It will be France vs Argentina in the final on Sunday at the Lusail stadium, while Morocco will take on Croatia for the third place a day earlier Saturday at the Khalifa International Stadium. They will have to hold their head high for what has been a truly incredible and historic World Cup performance of the North Africans- something that was already felt in the stadium at the end of the match against France where spectators and fans gave them a thundering applause.

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