By The Atlas Lions, Mar 26 2015 9:11PM
(Goal.com) Oscar Tabarez has one last chance to assess his options ahead of naming his Copa America squad as Uruguay take on Morocco.
Uruguay visit Morocco on Saturday in the final friendly before Oscar Tabarez selects his squad for this year's Copa America.
Tabarez's men will head to Chile in June aiming to retain the title they won for the 15th time with victory over Paraguay in the final four years ago in Argentina.
The absence of Luis Suarez - banned for the entire tournament after biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini during last year's World Cup - is a blow to Uruguay's hopes of success.
And the Barcelona forward is unavailable for the clash with Morocco in Agadir - which serves as Uruguay's final game before a pre-Copa America friendly with Guatemala, which comes after the deadline for naming squads.
Suarez is instead playing in a charity game to mark former team-mate Steven Gerrard's final season with Liverpool.
Also missing for the visitors is Hull City's Gaston Ramirez, the winger sidelined by a hamstring injury, while experienced duo Walter Gargano and Cristian Rodriguez have been overlooked.
Rodriguez has been left out because of a thigh problem but the decision to omit Napoli midfielder Gargano is surprising given his status as a regular with the Serie A side.
Gargano has not played for Uruguay since their 3-1 defeat to Costa Rica in the first game of the World Cup.
For Morocco, the game represents their biggest test since a 2-0 defeat to Russia last June. However, despite the quality of their opposition, two of the North Africans' more talented players have not been included in the squad.
Dynamo Kiev's Younes Belhanda and QPR's Adel Taraabt both miss out, with coach Badou Zaki handing call-ups to five uncapped players.
Goalkeepers Munir Mohand Mohamedi and Abdelali Mhamdi have both been picked for the first time, along with 19-year-old defender Ahmed El Messaoudi.
Further forward midfielder Sofyan Amrabat is another teenager to earn a call-up, the 18-year-old selected in spite of only making three appearances for Eredivisie side Utrecht.
Nantes attacker Yacine Bammou could win his first cap, but Verona midfielder Mounir Obbadi will not feature because of a hamstring issue.
For all the young talent potentially on show for Morocco, the focus is sure to be on Uruguay as they look to produce a strong performance in what serves as the last chance to impress Tabarez ahead of another tilt at the Copa America title.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 19 2015 4:50PM
(TheAtlasLions.com) Coach Mhamed Fakhir has selected 28 players from Botola Pro for the upcoming friendlies of the Moroccan locals national team against Congo and Burkina Faso at end of this month.
Here is the selection:
01-LAAROUBI ZOUHAIR - DHJ
02-ELGHARIB OUSSAMA - DHJ
03-AGUERDOUM EL IDRISSI YOUSSEF - DHJ
04-NANAH AYOUB - DHJ
05-HADRAF ZAKARIA - DHJ
06-ACHCHAKIR ABDERRAHIM - FAR
07-BENJELLOUN ABDESSALAM - FAR
08-EL MOUBARAKY ABDESSAMAD - CRA
09-NAMSAOUI OMAR - MAS
10-HOUSNI RACHID - WAC
11-AKID MOHAMMED - WAC
12-NAKACH BRAHIM - WAC
13-RABEH YOUSSEF - WAC
14-BALTHALM MAHDI - RSB
15-BOURKADI MOHAMED AMINE - OCK
16-OUNNAJEM MOHAMMED - CAK
17-EL ABBOUBI ABDELALI - CAK
18-JAHOUH AHMED - MAT
19-KHADROUF ABDELADIM - MAT
20-SAADANE MEROUANE - FUS
21-BATNA MOURAD - FUS
22-MOUAOUI ABDELGHANI - OCS
23-ABOURAZOUK HAMZA - RCA
24-KARROUCHY ADIL - RCA
25-AOUK BADIE - HUSA
26-OULHAJ MOHAMMED - RCA
27-IAJOUR MOUHSSINE - MAT
28-ABERHOUNE MOHAMED - MAT.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 18 2015 1:59PM
(TheAtlasLions.com) Morocco coach Badou Zaki has selected 25 players for the international friendly of the Atlas Lions with Uruguay on March 28th in Agadir.
Here is the selelction
1-BOUNOU YASSINE - REAL ZARAGOZA
2-M’HAMDI ABDELALI - KACM
3-MUNIR MOHAMED MOHAMEDI - C.D NUMANCIA
4-EL MOUTAQUI MEHDI - FC BAYERN MUNICH
5-OULHAJ MOHAMED - RCA
6-ACHENTEH ROCHDI - VITESSE ARNHEM
7-EL ADOUA ISSAM - CHONGQING LIFAN
8-ABARHOUNE MOHAMED - MAT
9-DIRAR NABIL - A.S MONACO
10-EL KHALIQI AYOUB - A.S .FA.R
11-KHARJA HOUSSINE - F.C SOCHAUX
12-LAZAAR ACHRAF - PALERMO
13-EL AHMADI KARIM - FEYENOORD ROTTERDAM
14-OBBADI MOUNIR - HELLAS VERONA
15-AMRABAT SOUFIANE - F.C UTRECHT
16-AIT BEN IDER JAMAL - A.J AUXERRE
17-EL MESSAOUDI AHMED - F.C LIERSE
18-AMRABAT NOUREDDINE - MALAGA F.C
19-BOUSSOUFA MBAREK - LOKOMOTIV MOSCOW
20-EL KADDOURI OMAR - TORINO
21-LABYAD ZAKARIA - VITESSE ARNHEM
22-HAMED-ALLAH ABDERRAZZAQ - GUANGZOU F.C
23-CHAHECHOUH ATIF - SIVASSPOR
24-IAJOUR MOUHSSINE - MAT
25-BAMMOU YACINE - F.C NANTES.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 16 2015 8:11PM
(Morocco World News) Rabat – The 16th edition of the football “Danone Nations Cup” will take place in October 2015 in Morocco, according to a statement released by the organizers of this sports event.
Morocco will host 500 finalists representing 32 countries participating in this Cup, the biggest football competition in the world for children under 12 years.
French footballer Zinedine Zidane, sponsor of the international tournament, announced the date of the event, adding that “playing in Morocco this year will be like a dream that became a reality for many of these children.”
The 15th edition of this event took place in Sao Paulo, Brazil from 13 to 16 November 2014.
Every year, a number of Moroccan children teams participate in this competition with the support of Danone Dairy Central.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 16 2015 8:08PM
(Morocco World News) Rabat – Morocco is planning to submit its candidature to host the 2026 world cup.
According to media reports, the President of the Moroccan Royal Football Federation (FRMF), Faouzi Lakjaa, discussed the matter with FIFA President Joseph Blatter in Zurich, Switzerland.
The governing body of international football will award the competition to an African country following the principle of rotation of continents established since early 2000s.
Morocco had already tried to host the global competition in 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010.
This time, however, Morocco’s chances to obtain the hosting rights of the prestigious sporting event will get better mainly because of the available infrastructure and the country’s expertise in organizing international competitions such as the FIFA Club World Cup in 2013 and 2014.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 16 2015 8:04PM
(Morocco World News) Rabat – Many European clubs are reportedly keen to sign Morocco international Omar El Kaddouri who plays as a midfielder for the Italian side of Torino on loan from Napoli.
In an interview with Italy’s Tuttosport, the player’s agent Mino Raiola and the agent of many other famous players said that clubs like Aton Villa, Tottenham, Sevilla and Marseille are interested in securing the services of the Moroccan footballer.
According to media reports, the price tag of the 24-year-old is expected to increase significantly from the current 4 million Euros initially estimated by specialists. In 22 games in Italy’s Serie A this season, the Moroccan is already considered a very important player in the squad of Giampiero Ventura, FC Torino’s manager.
The Belgian Moroccan played for the Belgium U21. He made his debut with the Moroccan national team on August 14, 2013 in a friendly against Burkina Faso. He scored his first goal for the Atlas Lions on May 23, 2014 in the 4-0 win over Mozambique.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 15 2015 2:25PM
(Football Italia) Lazio defender Abdoulay Konko reveals he turned down Senegal and Morocco call-ups to prevent family upsets.
The 31-year-old’s father is from Senegal, his mother from Morocco and he was born in France, making him eligible for all three countries.
“I’ve been called by Morocco and Senegal but I respectfully turned them down because I wouldn't want to hurt either of my parents by choosing one over the other,” Konko told BBC Sport.
“It’s a tough decision because you don't want to create tension in the family, so I decided to stay neutral.
“To some it sounds like a lazy excuse, but I love my parents and I prefer to spare them the agony of backlash from disappointed fans.
“If I had chosen Senegal, fans from Morocco will definitely criticise my decision, same for disappointed Senegalese, so it's a no-win situation.
“You live and die by your decisions as a man, so there is no regret on my part. Interestingly, I read in the past that I was actually waiting for a France call-up, but that's absolutely untrue.
“That option never came up and was never discussed, so it was just mere speculation.”
Konko spent much of his career in Italy, joining Juventus in 2002 and going on to play for Crotone, Siena, Genoa and Sevilla.
He arrived at Lazio in 2011.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 11 2015 2:43PM
(TheAtlasLions.com) Morocco national coach Badou Zaki has revealed his pre-selection for the friendly of the Atlas Lions with Uruguay in Agadir at the end of this month.
Here is the squad list:
1-BOUNOU YASSINE - REAL ZARAGOZA
2-M’HAMDI ABDELALI - KACM
3-MUNIR MOHAND MOHAMEDI - CD NUMANCIA
4-EL BOURKADI AMINE - OCK
5-EL MOUTAQUI MEHDI - FC BAYERN MUNCHEN
6-ACHCHAKIR ABDERAHIM - AS FAR
7-MANUEL DACOSTA - SIVASSPOR
8-OULHAJ MOHAMED - RCA
9-ABARHOUNE MOHAMED - MAT
10-DIRAR NABIL - AS MONACO
11-EL KHALIQI AYOUB - AS FAR
12-CHEBAK ISSAM - LE HAVRE AC
13-ACHANTEH ROCHDI - VITESSE ARNHEM
14-KHARJA HOUSSINE - SOCHAUX
15-EL ADOUA ISSAM - CHONGQING LIFAN
16-LAZAAR ACHRAF - PALERMO
17-EL KARROUCHY ADIL - RCA
18-EL AHMADI KARIM - FEYENOORD ROTTERDAM
19-OBBADI MOUNIR - HELLAS VERONE
20-AMRABAT SOUFIANE - FC UTRECHT
21-AIT BEN IDER JAMAL - AJ AUXERRE
22-ASSAIDI OUSSAMA - AL AHLI DUBAI
23-EL MESSAOUDI AHMED - LIERSE
24-AMRABAT NOUREDDINE - MALAGA FC
25-BOUSSOUFA MBAREK - LOKOMOTIV MOSCOW
26-EL KADDOURI OMAR - TORINO
27-SAADANE MARWANE - FUS
28-LABYED ZAKARIA - VITESSE ARNHEM
29-HAMED-ALLAH ABDERRAZZAQ - GUANGZOU FC
30-CHAHECHOUH ATIF - SIVASSPOR
31-IAJOUR MOUHSSINE - MAT
32-CHAMAKH MAROUANE - CRYSTAL PALACE
33-ELARABI YOUSSEF - GRANADA CF
34-BAMMOU YACINE - FC NANTES.
By The Atlas Lions, Mar 6 2015 4:35PM
(Morocco World News) Rabat – Uruguayan star, Luis Suarez, will not participate in his national team’s international friendly against Morocco scheduled to take place on March 29th in the Grand Stadium of Agadir.
Instead, the Barcelona forward is expected to participate in a charity game organized by the Liverpool FC Foundation that will feature sides led by club legend Steven Gerrard and retired vice-captain Jamie Carragher. The game is scheduled to take place on March 29th at the Anfield stadium.
The Agadir friendly was initially scheduled to pit Morocco against Brazil. But according to media reports, the game against the Selecao was canceled because the President of the Moroccan Royal Football Federation (FRMF), Fouzi Lakjaa, had refused to pay the MAD 30 million to bring the Brazilian team to Morocco.
By The Atlas Lions, Feb 17 2015 7:16PM
BERNE, Feb 17 (Reuters) - Morocco have appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) over their ban from the next two African Nations Cup tournaments, the Swiss-based tribunal said on Tuesday.
Morocco, originally due to stage this year's Nations Cup, were banned by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) after asking to postpone the tournament due to worries over the Ebola virus.
CAF refused, moving the tournament to Equatorial Guinea and fining the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) $1 million and ordering it to pay 8 million euros ($9.1 million) in damages to CAF and its partners.
"In its appeal to the CAS, the FRMF requests the annulment of the challenged decisions and that a final award be issued by the end of March 2015," CAS said in a statement.
"An arbitration procedure has been opened and is being conducted according to the Code of Sports."
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