The 2022 World Cup is continuing to produce shock results. The latest is Morocco's defeat of European powerhouse Portugal. Youssef En Nesyri's soaring 42nd-minute header saw Morocco advance to the semi-finals. In so doing, they become the first African or Arab nation to get to the last four. Many soccer pundits argue the 1-0 result was not a shock. Morocco are only one of three teams to reach the quarter-finals stage undefeated. They have also conceded just one goal. They defeated one of the pre-tournament favourites, Belgium, at the group stage, and then eliminated former world champions Spain in an earlier knockout stage. Their performances have been full of grit, attacking flair and determined defending.
Dubbed the Atlas Lions, Morocco look forward to opponents France in their semi-final on December the 14th. They are one game away from a historic appearance in the final. Their win against Portugal ignited an outpouring of joy and raucous celebrations throughout Morocco and the Moroccan diaspora across Africa. So momentous was the win that at the final whistle, congratulations from world leaders flooded social media. The ruler of Dubai tweeted: "It was an unprecedented victory for Arab football." Somalia's president tweeted: "This is testimony that Africa is rising and we are a force to be reckoned with." Morocco coach Walid Regragui said his team would, "write history for Africa".
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