By Morocco World News
The friendly games are in preparation for the 2019 African Cup of Nations, which will take place in June.
Rabat – Moroccan Royal Football Federation (FRMF) announced that the Atlas Lions will play two friendly games with Zambia and Gambia, before the 2019 African Cup of Nations (CAN).
The games are in preparation for the African competition, which will take place in June in Egypt.
Morocco’s national football team will play the first friendly game against the Gambia on Wednesday, June 12 at the Grand stadium in Marrakech at 5:30 p.m. local time.
The second friendly game against Zambia will also take place on June 16 in Marrakech at 5:30 local time.
FRMF said that the national team will begin training sessions in the national center for football in Sale, Rabat’s twin city starting June 2.
FRMF added that the Atlas Lions will head to Egypt on June 18 to participate in the African tournament, which will start on June 21.
The Moroccan team qualified for the 2019 tournament after a spectacular performance during the qualifier games.
Several football experts are predicting the Atlas Lions to win this year’s title.
In April, Senegalese football legend El Hadji Diouf expressed hope that Senegal would win the tournament, but acknowledged the presence of strong teams, such as Morocco.
“I hope they win the title as there are many other good teams -Egypt will be at the forefront with Morocco and Nigeria.”
The head coach of the Nigerian football team, Gernot Rohr, also placed Morocco among his favorites to win along with Egypt.
The most recent statement came from the manager of Cameroonian football team, Clarence Seedorf, who said that Morocco are one of the favorites to win the CAN otherwise known as AFCON.
“Ending up with the same points as Morocco, who are one of the favorites to win the AFCON, with only two goals difference says a lot about how we performed and prepared for the other games.”
@TheAtlasLions of #Morocco will play these friendlies in #Marrakesh ahead of #AFCON2019:
#Morocco 🆚 @GambiaFootball : Wed Jun 12th at 17h30 GMT+1
#Morocco 🆚 @zambianfootball : Sun Jun 16th at 17h30 GMT+1
(Lusaka Times) Chipolopolo has secured two high profile friendly matches for this June.
Zambia will play both dates away against Morocco and defending AFCON champions Cameroon in the two side’s pre-tournament preparations.
FAZ general secretary Adrian Kashala said the friendly’s will be played during a week-long camp at the invitation of Morocco.
“The Royal Moroccan Football Federation will host the Chipolopolo boys from June 6 – 17 and stage an international friendly match on June 16 against the Herve Renard drilled side,” Kashala said.
“During the same camp, Zambia will face Cameroon on June 9, 2019 in Madrid with another international friendly match against Gambia on the cards set for June 12, 2019.”
The development will see Zambia’s A side assembled for the trip while the home-based team will be away in South Africa to participate in the COSAFA Cup Durban is hosting from May 25 to June 8.
However,FAZ has yet to disclose who will be in charge of the friendly trip with interim coach Aggrey Chiyangi already overseeing COSAFA Cup camp over the last fortnight.
By Morocco World News
Rabat – The manager of Cameroonian football team, Clarence Seedorf, added himself to the list of renowned football experts who believe that the Moroccan national football team can win the 2019 African Cup of Nations (CAN) title.
In an interview with FIFA, the former footballer said that Morocco are one of the favorites to win the CAN otherwise known as AFCON.
Speaking about his team’s performance during the competition’s qualifier matches, Sedroof said that “Ending up with the same points as Morocco, who are one of the favourites to win the AFCON, with only two goals difference says a lot about how we performed and prepared for the other games.”
Several other renowned footballers and coaches have also said that the Moroccan national football team is one of their favorites to win the 2019 CAN.
In April, Senegalese football legend El Hadji Diouf said: “I hope they win the title as there are many other good teams -Egypt will be at the forefront with Morocco and Nigeria.”
The head coach of the Nigerian football team, Gernot Rohr, t placed Morocco is among his favorites to win along with Egypt.
“According to the last FIFA ranking, Morocco is currently the best in Africa, while Egypt will play at home and enjoy the support of their fans, and for this reason, both teams are the closest to the title,” he said.
The flagship tournament will be held in June 2019 in Egypt.
Head coach of Moroccan national football team Herve Renard has expressed confidence on his team for CAN.
“To win, you must stay focused and prepare for the competition to the fullest of your potential,” said Renard.
(CAFonline.com) Frenchman Herve Renard still ranks as they first coach in African history to win the Total Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) with two different teams. Renard produced one of the most scintillating results ever leading Zambia to the 2012 crown with a penalty shoot-out victory over Cote d’Ivoire.
Three years later, he turned the Ivorians tears from 2012 into chants of jubilation when he led them to the title with another post-match penalties conquest, this time over Ghana’s Black Stars.
He now looks straight at another unprecedented piece of history with Morocco’s Atlas Lions as he hopes to win a third continental crown with a side that has not won the title since 1976. Renard and his charges reached the quarter final of the 2017 showpiece losing 1-0 to Egypt.
Can Renard, and the Atlas Lions dream of quenching a 43-year old thirst?
“I don’t know…. everything is possible in football but first we have to look at our opening game which is the most important, then step by step. We have a tough group and it will be very important to come to Egypt with an ambition of respect all our opponents,” the Frenchman stated.
Morocco are in Group C with Renard’s former employers Cote d’Ivoire, South Africa and Namibia.
“We are in a very tough group and we need to come in here very concentrated. We have to be ready from the first game to get a good result which will give us some confidence going forward,” he added.
The 50-year old will be counting on the experience from the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia where despite bowing out in the group stages, the Atlas Lions gave encouraging performances. They finished bottom of the group after replicate 1-0 losses to Iran and Portugal and drew 2-2 with Spain who equalized in the final minute of added time.
“This experience will be very important because we played very good football. Though we didn’t get the result we wanted, all Moroccans were proud of their team. Now, we have to make them very happy again in Egypt,” stated the coach.
“We are coming in with an ambition and if you come with an ambition you have to beat everyone. We have a very good team and we need to believe in ourselves.”
Renard believes going through to the final will be tougher this time especially with the expansion of the tournament to 24 teams.
“The expansion makes it more difficult because there is one more round to play and the teams are more ambitious. But we are hoping to go very far in this tournament,” Renard noted.
Morocco topped their qualification group ahead of Cameroon with both sides picking 11 points with identical three wins, two draws and a loss from group B. The only loss they suffered was against each other, Cameroon winning the first leg (1-0) and Morocco winning the return tie (2-0).
Based in Cairo, Morocco will kick off their campaign against Namibia on 23 June at the Al Salam Stadium before playing Cote d’Ivoire five days later on South Africa on July 1 all at the same venue.
(Africanfootball.com) Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr has refuted reports that suggested that the Nigeria Football Federation has agreed a friendly match against Morocco.
Recent reports indicated that the two teams are set to lock horns in a pre-Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) match on the 9th of June 2019 in France.
This came as a surprise as the Super Eagles are scheduled to face Zimbabwe in a friendly game on June 8 in Asaba, Nigeria.
German tactician Rohr confirmed that they will not be facing the Atlas Lions.
"It was about organizing this friendly match, but unfortunately it cannot be done," said Rohr to Medias 24.
Nigeria are also expected to take on their West African rivals Senegal in another friendly match on the 16th of June 2019.
The Super Eagles will be hoping to clinch their fourth AFCON title in Egypt.