2022 World Cup Preview: Canada vs Morocco

The Atlas Lions are on the verge of making it to the round of 16 for the first time in 36 years, and Walid Regragui’s team only need a point against Canada to do it.

In 1986, Morocco advanced past the first round after defeating Portugal 3-1 in a challenging group that also included Poland and England.

Given the type of opponents they had to earn points from in group H, the 1976 African champions have already surpassed expectations and are primed for another knockout victory.

Morocco held Croatia to an interesting goalless draw and stunned Belgium to snap their 8-game group stage winning streak at the World Cup. The Atlas Lions are now level on points with Croatia and have one more than Belgium who sit third in Group F.

While Morocco seem to be the favourite in their tie against Canada, the North Americans may try to redeem themselves with a good result to exit the tournament. Canada looked promising when they played their first match against Belgium. They, however, lost through Michy Batshuayi’s solitary goal and followed that with a heavy defeat to Croatia. 

Morocco haven’t lost in their third group game since 1994, while Canada are looking for their first World Cup point(s).

FORM GUIDE (LAST FIVE MATCHES)

Canada’s only win in their last five matches came in their final World Cup warm-up match against Japan in a 2-1 win. They have conceded in each of their last five games. For Morocco, while they remain undefeated in their last five matches, they are also yet to concede.

 

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CANADA’S FORM

27 November 2022                Croatia 4-1 Canada               2022 World Cup Group F

November 23                        Belgium 1-0    Canada           2022 World Cup Group F

November 17                       Canada    2–1   Japan             Friendly

November 11                        Bahrain   2–2   Canada          Friendly

September 27                       Canada    0–2   Uruguay        Friendly

 

MOROCCO’S FORM

27 November 2022      Belgium       0-2      Morocco            2022 world Cup Group F

23 November 2022     Morocco        0-0      Croatia            2022 World Cup Group F

17 November 2022      Morocco       3–0     Georgia            Friendly

27 September 2022    Morocco        0–0     Paraguay          Friendly

23 September 2022     Morocco       2–0     Chile                Friendly

 

HEAD TO HEAD

On Thursday, Morocco and Canada will clash for the fourth time. With two victories and one tie in their prior meetings, the Africans have proven to be the superior team.

 

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24 Oct 1984 Morocco         3-2       Canada International Friendly

01 Jun 1994 Canada          1-1       Morocco International Friendly

11 Oct 2016 Morocco         4-0       Canada International Friendly

 

TEAM NEWS

CANADA

Canada boss John Herdman would either go all out to hopefully win some points or offer opportunities to other players. However, the former option seems likely.

PREDICTED LINEUP

(3-4-3): Borjan; Johnston,  Vitoria, Miller; Laryea, Eustaquio, Kone, Davies; Buchanan, Hoilett, David 

 

MOROCCO

Morocco manager Walid Regragui named an unchanged starting lineup against Belgium and will most likely maintain it in their match against Canada. 

PREDICTED LINEUP

(4-3-3): Bounou; Hakimi, Aguerd, Saiss, Mazraoui; Amrabat, Ounahi, Amallah; Ziyech, En-Nesyri, Boufal