• Ayoub El Kaabi: Star of CHAN 2018

    By Morocco World News

    Rabat – It’s been an incredible month for Ayoub El Kaabi. The rising soccer star, born on June 26, 1993 in Casablanca, started his football career as an striker for the football club Racing Athletic Club of Casablanca where he played for one year (2016-2017) before moving to Renaissance Sportive Berkane, the club he currently plays for.

    The 24-year-old was the top scorer of Morocco’s second division football league Botola 2, during the 2016-2017 season, with 25 goals to his credit.

    Abdelhak Rizkallah, president of RAC of Casablanca, spoke about Kaabi in an interview conducted by the news outlet Le360. He said, “El Kaabi is a serious player, he wants to play and he is very determined, he is a role model for all the youth who want to be professional and make a future.”

    El Kaabi made his international debut for Morocco on 13 January during the 2018 Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) match against Mauritania, scoring three goals. The RS Berkane’s striker was named Man of The Match on January 31 after Morocco’s encounter with Libya’s National Football Team during CHAN’s semi-final match. Morocco won the game 3-1.

    CHAN executives chose El Kaabi as the best player due to the world-class performance he displayed during the semi-final match hosted in Mohammed V stadium in Casablanca. El Kaabi displayed pure talent throughout the entire tournament scoring 8 goals in 5 matches, making him the top goal scorer in the entire history of CHAN.

    “If I’m the top scorer, it’s thanks to my teammates, I thank them. I do not want to stop halfway. I still want to score goals and contribute to the dedication of my team, “he told CAF Online.

    Ayoub El Kaabi received three offers from Egyptian football clubs, including Al Ahly and Zamalek. The president of RS Berkane, Fouzi Lekjaa, declined the offers, still wanting to see Ayoub El Kaabi wearing RS Berkan’s white and orange shirt.

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  • Mehdi Carcela joined Standard Liège on loan.

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  • CHAN 2018: Nigeria to face Morocco in final!

    Sudan lost their 2018 CAF African Nations Championship semifinal match 1-0 to Nigeria at Stade de Marrakech on Wednesday.

    The defeat means the Falcons of Jediane will lock horns against Libya, who lost to Morocco earlier on Wednesday, in the third-place playoff.

    For the Super Eagles, a first half goal through Okechukwu Gabriel ensured Salisu Yusuf's men are through to meet Morocco in the final on Sunday.

    https://africanfootball.com/news/741601/10-man-Sudan-lose-CHAN-semifinal-to-Nigeria

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  • Transfers: Genoa sign Morocco defender

    By Football Italia staff

    Genoa have officially signed Moroccan defender Jawad El Yamiq from Raja Casablanca.

    Transfermarkt reports Genoa have paid €640,000 for El Yamiq, who has three caps for Morocco and could feature at the World Cup this summer, alongside Juventus' Medhi Benatia.

    The 25-year-old is the second player to arrive at Marassi on deadline day after Oscar Hiljemark.

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  • CHAN 2018: Ayoub El Kaabi brace sends Morocco into CHAN final

    (Africanfootball.com) Ayoub El Kaabi continued his superb form at the 2018 African Nations Championship, as his two goals helped Morocco overcome Libya 3-1 in the first semifinal on Wednesday evening.

    The Atlas Lions have advanced into their first CHAN final, though they needed extra time to overcome a tough-to-beat Mediterranean Knights at Stade Mohamed V in Casablanca. The hosts will face either Sudan or Nigeria in Sunday’s championship decider.

    Morocco created their first opening as early as the fifth minute, as Achraf Bencharki put Ismail Haddad in on goal and the winger chipped the ball over the on-rushing goalkeeper Muhammad Nashnoush, but Libyan defender Motasem Sabbou got back to clear from almost under his own crossbar.

    And that same crossbar was rattled just past the midway point of the first half, with midfielder Salaheddine Saidi having a free header from a Bencharki free kick, but his effort rebounded off the woodwork.

    The Atlas Lions also saw right-back Mohamed Nahiri send a shot on target direct from a free kick, but Nashnoush was able to punch the ball clear to ensure his side went to the break level at 0-0.

    Libya offered little in attack for the first hour of the match, but on 63 minutes they nearly claimed the lead: striker Saleh Al Taher got on the end of a corner kick and powered a header on target, only for Moroccan left-back Abdeljalil Jbira to clear off his own goal line.

    Yet in the 73rd minute it was Morocco who finally broke the deadlock. Substitute Zakaria Hadraf did some great work down the left flank before chipping in a cross from the by-line which was headed home by Ayoub El Kaabi.

    If the hosts thought their prolific striker’s goal was going to be enough, they were sorely mistaken: in the 86th minute goalkeeper Anas Zniti was caught in possession, allowing Abdulrahman Khalleefa to score an equaliser and send the game into extra time.

    Yet El Kaabi wasn’t finished, and in the seventh minute of the extra half hour he pounced again to complete his brace. A corner kick was poorly dealt with by Libya’s defence and El Kaabi was gifted a simple tap-in at the far post to make it 2-1 and net his eighth of the tournament.

    And Morocco finally killed off Libya’s challenge in the 117th minute when Walid El Karti won a soft penalty and converted it himself to make the score 3-1 and seal a place in the final.

    Morocco (0) (1) 3 (El Kaabi 73’ 97’, El Karti 117’ pen)

    Libya (0) (1) 1 (Khalleefa 86’) - after extra time

    Morocco: Zniti, Nahiri, El Yamiq, Banoun, Jbira, Saidi, Boulahroud, El Karti, Bencharki (Hadraf 54’), Haddad (Barrahma 80’), El Kaabi (Aguerd 105’)

    Libya: Nashnoush, Almaghasi, El Trbi, Masaud, Sabbou, Ahmed, Khalleefa, Aleyat (Alaqoub 80’), Aribi (Taktak 53’), Ablo (Abushnaf 84’), Al Taher

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  • CHAN 2018: Morocco through to final after beating Libya 3-1 in thriller!

    Final whistle!

    115' Penalty for Morocco scored by El Karti

    Second half of extra time underway!

    First half of Extra Time just ended

    El Kaabi gives Morocco their 2-1 lead against Libya in Extra Time

    First half of Extra Time underway

    Final whistle!

    3 minutes of additional time

    86' Goal for Libya following a mistake of Zniti

    73' Great header of El Kaabi gives Morocco their leading goal 1-0 against Libya. Great assist from Hadraf and neat header from El Kaabi.

    Morocco 0-0 Libya - H/T

    39' Nahiri's free-kick blocked

    31' Boulehroud shoots on target

    24' Great chance for Saidi! His header hit the woodwork

    Match is underway!

    Competition: CHAN 2018 Semi-final

    Location: Stade Mohamed V, Casablanca

    Kickoff: 16h30 GMT, 17h30 CET

    Morocco starting line up:

    Zniti (GK)-Jbira-Banoun (C)-El Yamiq-Nahiri-Saidi-Boulehroud-El Karti-Bencharki-El Haddad-El Kaabi.

    Libya starting line up:

    1 MOHAMED F ABDALLA NASHNUSH (C)GK

    2 AHMED MOHAMED AL.MAGHASI DF

    3 MOTASEM MASAUD MASAUD SABBOU DF

    6 MOHAMED ABRAHIM ALEYAT MF

    7 SALEM ABLO FW

    8 SAND MASAUD M MASAUD X DF

    15 AHMED ELTRBI DF

    17 ABDULRHMAN RAMADHAN KHALIFA MF

    18 BADER HASAN AHMED MF

    21 SALEH TAHER SAEID FW

    23 OMAR ARIBI HAMMAD FW

    Live Broadcast: Arryadia, Al-Oula, FoxSports 2 NL, BeIN Sports Global+HD1

    Live streaming video: http://arryadia.com/ http://snrtlive.ma/

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  • CHAN 2018: Morocco vs Libya - Free to air!

    (TheAtlasLions.com) The crucial match between the Atlas Lions of Morocco against Libya will be broadcast Free to air on Arryadia, Al-Oula, BeIN Sports Global, Kickoff: 16h30 GMT, 17h30 CET

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  • Transfers: Nabil Jaadi signs with Greek side Asteras Tripolis on loan from Udinese.

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  • Transfers: Oussama Tannane back to France

    (TheAtlasLions.com) Morocco international Oussama Tannane is back with St Etienne from loan spell with Spanish club Las Palmas.

    He will probably start with the reserves team. He is still under contract with St Etienne until 2020.

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  • Transfers: OGC Nice have enquired about a return for Younes Belhanda

    Ligue 1 side OGC Nice have contacted Turkish giants Galatasaray over a possible loan return for Younes Belhanda, according to Manu Lonjon of Yahoo Sport.

    Les Aiglons have gone as far as submitting a loan with option to buy offer, but Gala want to sell out-right after Belhanda’s relationships with certain individuals at the club have turned sour.

    From Germany, Werder Bremen are in active negotiations with Galatasaray about agreeing a straight transfer, so Nice could miss out.

    http://www.getfootballnewsfrance.com/2018/ogc-nice-have-enquired-about-a-return-for-younes-belhanda/

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