Morocco and Croatia play out goalless draw

Morocco and Croatia play out goalless draw

  • Croatia and Morocco play out a drab goalless draw in Group F opener
  • 2018 runners-up dominate possession but lack a cutting edge
  • Next up: Belgium-Morocco and Croatia-Canada on 27 November

Morocco 0-0 Croatia | Group F

Thrills, spills and goals were sadly lacking at Al Bayt Stadium as Morocco and Croatia opened their Qatar 2022 campaigns with a forgettable 0-0 draw.

Chances were in short supply throughout a tense and evenly contested match, with Yassine Bono producing the one major save of note to keep out Nikola Vlasic’s effort late in the first half.

The 2018 runners-up dominated possession, while Achraf Hakimi showed some flashes of brilliance. But when the list of Qatar 2022’s most memorable matches is drawn up, this will not figure near the top.

Belgium and Canada face off in today’s other match in this section, and you can keep up-to-date via our Qatar 2022 live blog.

Key moment

Given the scarcity of clear-cut chances, Vlasic’s effort on the stroke of half-time stood out. Ivan Perisic, who was largely subdued, did some good work in the build-up before Borna Sosa produced a fine cross. But while the on-loan Torino striker looked odds-on to score, Bono came up with a fine save to keep the scoreline blank.

Stat of the Match

By taking to the field 75 days after his 37th birthday, Luka Modric became the oldest Croatian ever to take part in a World Cup match. The Vatreni captain surpassed the record set by Drazen Ladic, who was 35 years and 191 days old – a comparative youngster – when he took the field against the Netherlands in 1998.

Player of the Match

Luka Modric

@FIFA.com

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The popular Mukansaga, 34, was the fourth official assisting South Africa’s Victor Gomes, the centre referee, Zakhele Siwela and Lothian Souru Phatsoane.

Mukansanga is among three female referees selected for the first time for a men’s FIFA World Cup alongside Japanese Yamashita Yoshimi and French Stephanie Frappart.

Mukansanga made history at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations when she was appointed as the center Referee for the game involving Zimbabwe and Guinea.

“I’m excited, and this is a privilege for me. I had never dreamed to go to the men’s World Cup,” Mukansanga told FIFA.com after her appointment.

“The first time I was nominated for World Cup was in France for the 2019 Women’s World Cup, so my next target was more at the Women’s World Cup in New Zealand in 2023.

“Being appointed to the Men’s World Cup is something new, another opportunity we get. It means FIFA recognises that women are working hard, that we are providing quality refereeing and that we can deliver and reach higher, up to the top of the men’s game.”

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Aliou Cisse to name star-studded squad for Qatar World Cup

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African Champions Senegal head coach Aliou Cisse set to name a star-studded 2022 Fifa World Cup squad on Friday, November 11, ahead of their opener against the Netherlands.

Senegalese Football Federation have confirmed that the 2021 African champions will announce their final 26-man squad ahead of their opener at the 40,000-seater Al Thumama Stadium, a venue steeped in culture and tradition.

Without exaggeration, Senegal faces tough matches in Group A against the Netherlands, hosts Qatar and Ecuador.

They will face host Qatar in their second World Cup outing on Friday, November 25th, at the same venue Al Thumama before their final group A contest against South America’s west coast side Ecuador at the Khalifa International Stadium.

Global soccer pundits believe that the Teranga Lions squad is full of talent, as in the 2002 World Cup when they reached the last eight.

Bayern Munich striker Sadio Mane, Chelsea duo Édouard Mendy and Kalidou Koulibaly are some of the important names expected in the squad.

However, Senegal forward Sadio Mane, who was forced off with an apparent knee injury 20 minutes into Bayern Munich’s Bundesliga 6-1 win over Werder Bremen on Tuesday, just a few days before the World Cup, is now a doubt.

Senegal’s Fixtures Group A (All times EAT)
Monday 21 November: Senegal vs Netherlands – 16:00

Friday 25 November: Qatar vs Senegal – 13:00

Tuesday 29 November: Ecuador vs Senegal – 15:00

Expected squad

Goalkeepers: Edouard Mendy (Chelsea), Alfred Gomis (Rennes), Seny Dieng (QPR).

Defenders:  Kalidou Koulibaly (Chelsea), Formose Mendy (Amiens), Moussa Niakhate (Nottingham Forest), Bouna Sarr (Bayern Munich)Pape Abou Cisse (Olympiacos), Fode Ballo-Toure (Milan), Abdou Diallo (RB Leipzig), Ismail Jakobs (Monaco)

Midfielders: Pape Matar Sarr (Tottenham), Pathe Ciss (Rayo Vallecano), Nampalys Mendy (Leicester), Moustapha Name (Patos), Boubakary Soumare (Leicester), Krepin Diatta (Monaco), Idrissa Gueye (Everton), Pape Gueye (Marseille), Cheikhou Kouyate (Nottingham Forest) 

Forwards: Sadio Mane (Bayern Munich), Iliman Ndiaye (Sheffield United), Ismaila Sarr (Watford), Boulaye Dia (Salernitana), Famara Diédhiou (Alanyaspor), Bamba Dieng (Marseille) 

Connect with us @football_sierra, on Facebook/ Instagram Football Sierra Leone, the writer @bittar32, Contact bittar@footballsierraleone.net, African Football News.

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Current champions of the CAF Women’s Champions League, Mamelodi Sundowns, together with tournament hosts ASFAR, Tanzania’s Simba Queens FC and Bayelsa Queens from Nigeria, have advanced to the semi-final phase of the 2022 edition that is currently taking place in Morocco.

The much-anticipated semi-finals will be played on Wednesday, 09 November 2022, at the Prince Heritier Moulay El Hassan Stadium in Rabat.

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For the semi-finals, Mamelodi Sundowns of South Africa will face Simba Queens FC of Tanzania at 17:00 local time (16:00 GMT) while ASFAR of Morocco will face Bayelsa Queens FC of Nigeria at 21:00 local time (20:00 GMT).

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