Morocco vs Portugal preview

Tomorrow at 3pm the Al Thumama Stadium will host the first quarter final of the day as Morrocco will take on Portugal to determine who will gain a place in the semifinals and become the potential opponents for England if they manage to beat the current champions France in their quarter final match up later in the day.  

Morocco head into this game after a hard fought 120 minutes where they battled with Spain and ended up going through on penalties after goalkeeper Bono produced two saves from Carlos Soler and Sergio Busquets as Morocco went through after Achraf Hakimi cheekily dinked Unai Simon to send the African side to their first ever quarter finals.  

Portugal head into this game after smashing Switzerland 6-1 in a game where manager Fernando Santos made some big calls by dropping Ronaldo and Cancelo these changes proved good fortune for Portugal as they were relentless and produced their best performance in the tournament thus far. 

Key Players/Team News: 

Morocco manager Walid Regragui will be hoping that Sofyan Amrabat produces another fine display in midfield and that Hakim Ziyech continues to impress for his team to have a chance of becoming the first African team to reach a World Cup semifinal. Regragui will be worried however as key defenders Roman Saiss and Nayef Aguerd picked up injuries in their win against Spain he will be hoping he has his main center backs back as they will be key to Morocco maintaining the best defensive record from any team in the World Cup so far.  

Whereas Portugal manager Santos will face a selection dilemma as Goncalo Ramos came in for Ronaldo and scored a hat-trick as well as providing an assist does Santos stick with Ramos or go for the experience of Ronaldo to help Portugal reach their first World Cup semifinal since 2006. Rafael Leao has taken his chances when given them, he has scored twice from substitute appearances will he be given the nod ahead of Joao Felix? Santos will hope that Bruno Fernandes continues his great form going into tomorrow’s game. 

Score Prediction: 

Morocco have been fantastic in this tournament and are well deserving of a place in the quarters however Portugal will be the fitter team going into this game and they look to be one of the teams that can go all the way, they have the experience in these moments and that is what will give them the edge in this match. 

Morocco 1 Portugal 3