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Atlas Lions : The 5 most iconic moments of the Morocco national football team

On the 19th of October 1957, the Morocco national Football team played against Irak on its first football game as an independent country. The Atlas Lions since then have managed to build a reputation facing strong and experienced teams. To commemorate the Atlas Lions’ first game in 1957 we will stop by the team’s 5 most iconic moments throughout history. Flashback.

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The 5 most iconic moments of the Atlas Lions throughout history./Ph. DR

1. Winners of the African Nations Cup in 1976

After participating to the African Nations Cup (CAN) for 15 times, Morocco managed to win its first championship. The regional competition was organized in 1976 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Atlas Lions, led by Ahmed Faras, topped the final group by defeating Guinea, which finished second thanks to Ahmed Majrouh, known as «Baba».

2. The 1986 World Cup and defeating Portugal

The Atlas Lions were the first African football team to win a group at the World Cup. In 1986, Morocco participated for the second time to the competition, organized then by Mexico. Although they were defeated, Morocco became the second nation from outside Europe and the Americas to reach the second round. The national team managed to lead Group F after holding Poland and England to goalless draws. The most notorious game about this cup was the one played against Portugal (3-1). 

3. Qualified to the 1998 World Cup

11 years later, in 1998, Morocco was qualified to the 1998 World Cup held in France, after winning a game against Ghaba. Khalid Raghib was the hero of the game.

4. The 1998 World Cup

The participation of the Moroccan national team to the 1998 World Cup, organized by France, is iconic. Although they were defeated on the first round, the Atlas Lions led by the French coach Henri Michel, managed to score five goals in the competition, three of them were against Scotland.

5. Defeating Algeria in 2004

The performance of Morocco at the 2004 CAN was also very remarkable. The national team, led by Badou Zaki, defeated Algeria in the quarter-finals, Mali, before losing in the final against Tunisia, host country of the continental competition.

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