Watch: Moroccan fans in UAE say World Cup win against Portugal 'is beyond wildest dreams'

The ‘Atlas Lions’, ranked No. 22, stunned world No. 9 Portugal 1-0 in the blockbuster quarter-final encounter


Ashwani Kumar

Published: Sat 10 Dec 2022, 11:12 PM

Last updated: Sat 10 Dec 2022, 11:14 PM

Moroccan expats and football fans are in jubilant mood as Morocco created history by reaching the semi-finals stage of the Fifa World Cup. The ‘Atlas Lions’, ranked No. 22, stunned world No. 9 Portugal 1-0 in the blockbuster quarter-final encounter.

In the closing moments of a tightly fought first half, Youssef En-Nesyri delivered a moment of World Cup history by scoring a stunner, which at the end was enough to secure a famous victory. Representing the Arab world and the African continent, Morocco have made history by reaching the semi-finals stage of the biggest tournament in the world, and their fans are on cloud nine.

Mounaime Oukassi
Mounaime Oukassi

“I am a die-hard fan and follower of the national team. I can’t express my emotions right now. It’s surreal. It’s beyond our wildest dreams. I can’t imagine the celebrations back home. I am grateful to the support my country has been receiving from the leadership, citizens and residents,” said Moroccan expat Mounaime Oukassi in Abu Dhabi.

Soukaina Aouane
Soukaina Aouane

Another Moroccan expat Soukaina Aouane is on top of the world and was keeping her fingers crossed hoping her team can defend their one-goal advantage.

“I was praying the whole time as Portugal came close to scoring. We missed a few chances to score a second goal. The result is historic for us. We are the first African nation to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup. This means a lot. We went down to 10-men, but they held strong to rewrite history books. These are our dream come true moments,” she said.

Jijo Joseph
Jijo Joseph

Meanwhile, Indian expat Jijo Joseph is excited at the prospects of a non-European or South American side vying for the World Cup glory. Interestingly, he was supposed to fly out to Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala by 9.15pm but the flight got rescheduled for an early morning departure.

“At first, I was disappointed as my flight got delayed but then I was able to watch the stunning quarterfinal encounter where the Moroccans blazed their way past Portugal into record books. It was also Cristiano Ronaldo’s last World Cup match. I strongly feel Morocco have the potential to go all the way to the final and challenge for the ultimate prize.”

Morocco will be back in action on Wednesday for the semi-final clash.


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