Home » AFCON 2023: Favourites Morocco beat Tanzania to open campaign in style

AFCON 2023: Favourites Morocco beat Tanzania to open campaign in style

by Lesley Ngwa
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2022 World Cup semi-finalists Morocco began their AFCON campaign with a 3#0 win over 10-man Tanzania in San Pedro on Wednesday January 17, 2024,

Captain Romain Saiss scored a rare goal to put the Atlas Lions of Morocco ahead at half time.

Azzedine Ounahi and Youssef En-Nesyri added two more in the space of three second-half minutes to complete their dominance, especially after Tanzania had Novatus Miroshi sent off after a second yellow card.

The victory over the group outsiders Tanzania was anticipated as Morocco are ranked 13th in the world, 108 places above the Tanzania.

Morocco began with seven of the team that started in the 2#0 World Cup semi-final loss to France in Qatar.

Hakim Ziyech, on loan to Galatasaray from Chelsea, lifted a free-kick over the defensive wall and when goalkeeper Aisha Manula failed to grasp it, Saiss poked the loose ball over the line to give Morocco the lead.

Tanzanian hopes of levelling suffered a huge blow with 20 minutes remaining when Miroshi fouled Ounahi and was sent off for his second yellow-card offence.

Ounahi rounded off slick, short passing to increase the Moroccan lead on 77 minutes with a low shot from inside the box that flew past Manula into the corner of the net.

Tanzania were battling with 10 men and conceded again on 80 minutes when En-Nesyri fired a cross into the net for a goal that was confirmed by VAR two minutes later.

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