FIFA World Cup

Portugal vs Morocco preview,stats and team news

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Cristiano Ronaldo’s  powered Portugal will be up against Morocco. The encounter will be crucial for Morocco who lost their opener against Iran as Portugal powered past Spain with Ronaldo hitting a hatrick.

With a scintillating performance against Spain last week, Portugal would be eyeing a top-16 finish. Thus, this game will prove to be crucial for Portugal in the context of their survival in the tournament.

Meanwhile, Morocco will enter the encounter with an aim no less than a victory. The shocking 1-0 defeat against Iran have put them in back seat as they will be playing their remaining matches against two competitive sides.

Team News

Cristiano Ronaldo was seen in some sense of unease in the game against Spain. However, he is expected to get back to the groove ahead of the crucial encounter against Morocco.

Nordin Amrabat of Morocco might  miss the encounter after suffering the concussion in the game against Iran.

Head-to-head in World Cups

Portugal 0 – 1 Morocco. This will be the only second time when Portugal and Morocco will be up against each other in a FIFA World Cup. The last time when both the teams contested each other, Morocco had the upper hand as they won the match 3-1.

Portugal Probable Starting XI

Rui Patricio, Cedric, Pepe, Jose Fonte, Raphael Guerreiro, William, Joao Moutinho, Bernardo Silva, Joao Mario, Andre Silva, and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Morocco Probable Starting XI

Monir El Kajoui, Achraf Hakimi, Ghanem Saiss, Mehdi Benatia, Hamza Mendyl, Karim El Ahmadi, Hakim Ziyach, Mbark Boussoufa, Younes Belhanda, Noureddine Amrabat, and Khalid Boutaib.

Stats to look into ahead of the encounter:

Portugal’s only loss against African opposition at the FIFA World Cup has come against Morocco.

Ever since 2002 FIFA World Cup, Portugal has never lost a game against a non-European country.

In last 10 World Cup group matches, Portugal has lost only match which came against Germany in 2014.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s hat-trick against Spain in Portugal’s previous group game made him the oldest player in the history of the World Cup to score a hat-trick of goals.

Having scored an own-goal against Iran, Aziz Bouhaddouz of Morocco became the only third substitute player to score an own-goal in the history of FIFA World Cup

 

About Collins Okinyo

Appointed by CAF President Dr.Ahmad as CAF Media Expert. An expert on African football with over 13 years experience ,always with an ear to the ground with indepth knowledge of the game. I have worked for top publications including 7 years at www.supersport.com until i founded www.soka25east.com to quench the thirst of football lovers across the continent. I have trained young upcoming journalists who are now a voice in African football.I have covered World Cup,AFCON,CHAN,Champions League,Confederations Cup,Cecafa,Cosafa,Wafu and many other football tournaments across the World. Founder Football Africa Arena(FAA),Founder www.afrisportdigital.com

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