Saturday 22 June 2024

FIFA 2026 World Cup Qualifiers: Morocco’s Head Coach Unveils 27-Man Squad

ندوة صحافية للسيد وليد الركراكي


Morocco’s football team head coach, Walid Regragui, unveiled the 27-man squad selected to take part in the two upcoming matches of the Atlas Lions against Zambia and the Republic of the Congo in the FIFA 2026 World Cup qualifiers (African Zone).

The Atlas Lions will face Zambia on 7 June in Agadir, and the Republic of the Congo on 11 June in Kinshasa, in the 3rd and 4th rounds of Group E respectively.

Here follows the list of players called up:

 Goalkeepers: Yassine Bounou (Al Hilal/Saudi Arabia), Mounir El Kajoui (Al Wehda FC/Saudi Arabia), El Mehdi Benabid (AS FAR).

Defenders: Achraf Hakimi (Paris Saint-Germain/France), Mohamed Chibi (Pyramids/Egypt), Abdelkabir Abqar (Deportivo Alaves/Spain), Achraf Dari (Royal Charleroi S.C./Belgium), Nayef Aguerd (West Ham United/England), Ghanem Saïss (Al Shabab/Saudi Arabia), Chadi Riad (Real Betis/Spain), Yahya Attiat Allah (PFC Sochi/Russia), Noussair Mazraoui (Bayern Munich/Germany).

Midfielders: Sofyan Amrabat (Manchester United/England), Oussama El Azzouzi (Bologna FC/Italy), Bilal El Khannouss (Genk/Belgium), Ibrahim Diaz (Real Madrid/Spain), Ismael Saibari (PSV Eindhoven/Netherlands), Oussama Targhalline (Le Havre/France), Amir Richardson (Stade de Reims/France), Azzedine Ounahi (Olympique Marseille/France).

Forwards: Hakim Ziyech (Galatasaray/Turkey), Ilyas Akhomach (Villarreal/Spain), Ayoub El Kaabi (Olympiakos/Greece), Youssef En-Nesyri (Sevilla FC/Spain), Soufiane Rahimi (Al Ain/United Arab Emirates), Amine Adli (Bayern Leverkusen/Germany), Eliesse Ben Seghir (AS Monaco/France).

MAP: 28 mai 2024

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In the latest FIFA rankings released on Thursday, Morocco has ascended to the 12th position globally. With a tally of 1669.44 points, the Atlas Lions maintain their leading position in Africa, surpassing Senegal, which now holds the 18th rank with 1623.34 points.

At the regional level, Morocco continues to dominate, holding the top spot among Arab nations, with Qatar trailing behind at 35th place with 1504.06 points.

On the global stage, Argentina remains firmly at the summit of the FIFA rankings, followed closely by France and Belgium in second and third place, respectively.

The current FIFA Top 10 standings as of June 20, 2024, are as follows:

1. Argentina

2. France

3. Belgium

4. Brazil

5. England

6. Portugal

7. Netherlands

8. Spain

9. Croatia

10. Italy

he Moroccan National Football Team secured a large victory against Congo Brazzaville 6-0 on Tuesday at the Agadir Grand Stadium in the 4th round of Group E (African zone) qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup.

The Atlas Lions’ goals were scored by Azzeddine Ounahi (8’), Chadi Riad (16’), Ayoub El Kaabi (20’, 39’, 53’) and Soufiane Rahimi (62’).

Morocco beat Zambia 2-1 on Friday at Agadir’s Adrar Stadium in the 3rd Day of Group E (African zone) qualifying for the 2026 World Cup.

The Atlas Lions won thanks to goals from Hakim Ziyech (6th) and Eliesse Ben Seghir (67th). Edouard Chilufya (80th) scored for Zambia.

With this victory, Morocco consolidate their position at the top of Group E with six points from two matches.

The game against Congo Brazzaville, part of matchday 4, will be held on June 11 at Agadir’s Adrar Stadium (8pm), instead of the Stade des Martyrs in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Moroccan national football team will play Congo Brazzaville, on June 11 at the Grand Stadium of Agadir, for the 4th day of the African qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup, the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) announced.

FRMF had received a letter from FIFA informing it that the Congo Brazzaville-Morocco match will be held at the Grand Stadium of Agadir on June 11 (8 p.m.) instead of the Martyrs Stadium in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, FRMF pointed out in a press release.

Atlas Lions will play Zambia tonight in Agadir for the 3rd round of these qualifiers.

Morocco tops Group E with 3 points, following their away victory against Tanzania (0-2) on November 21. Zambia, Niger and Tanzania, who have each played two matches, also have 3 points. 

Head coach of the Moroccan national team Walid Regragui said, on Thursday in Agadir, that the Atlas Lions’ objective is to win their match against Zambia and stay top of Group E of the African qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup 2026.

“We will do what is necessary to get the three victory points to stay ahead in our group,” he told a pre-match press conference before the Morocco-Zambia game, scheduled for Friday at the Adrar Stadium in Agadir for Matchday 3 (Group E).

“Zambia are a team we know well, having played them at the last Africa Cup of Nations, but Friday’s match will be held in front of our own fans and will certainly be different from AFCON,” he said.

In this regard, he noted that the Moroccan national team “can do better than their recent performances. In the last two games, we scored a goal (against Angola in a friendly), but the important thing is to have chances which we need to convert”, he added, noting that “it’s not a question of attacking play, because the national team creates a lot of chances, but we’re still lacking in goal-scoring efficiency”.

“We have talented players. But working at club level is different from working for the national team. With the succession of matches, I think the players will be more at ease and therefore more effective,” he said.

“Playing at home means we have to win, but the important thing is to qualify for the World Cup,” stressed Regragui, explaining that “qualification is a marathon with several matches, and we’re well prepared for this marathon. Our ambition is to give Morocco a third consecutive appearance at the World Cup”.

For his part, Zambia coach Avram Grant noted that his team would be facing a Moroccan side packed with stars who play in the world’s top leagues, with the ambition of winning the game, adding that Friday’s encounter would be different from that of the last AFCON.

Morocco lead Group E with 3 points, after their away win over Tanzania (0-2) on November 21. Zambia, Niger and Tanzania, who played two matches, also have 3 points.

Morocco’s national beach soccer team on Monday started a training camp at the Mohammed VI Football Complex in Maâmora (suburbs of Salé), the Royal Moroccan Football Federation said.

Fifteen players have been called up by national head coach Gilberto Da Costa de Souza to participate in this training course, which runs until May 7th.

The players called up are Yasser Abada, Manar M’hamed, Anouar Al Abbasi, Ibrahim Abagli, Reda Zahraoui, Adnane Oubahri and Radouane Ennaciri.

They also include Mustapha Tais, Amine Al Bidouri, Zouhair Jabbary, Driss Ghannam, Badr Al Kraichly, Mohamed Essahli, Ali El Khdym and Mourad Youssef.