2023 WOMEN WORLD CUP
France ends Africa’s World Cup run, defeating Morocco 4-0
Africa’s journey in the World Cup is over as France efficiently dispatches Morocco with a 4-0 win ending their historic run in their debut tournament.
The quarterfinal stage of the World Cup is now set, but notably missing is an African team, as Morocco’s defeat to France in Adelaide sealed their exit.
Joining South Africa, Nigeria, and Zambia, Morocco’s journey concludes with a 4-0 loss to France in the round of 16, leaving the tournament without African representation.
After overcoming early setbacks- including a 6-0 defeat to German- the Atlas Lionesses showcased remarkable resilience by defeating South Korea and group leader Colombia to secure a spot in the knockout stage. However, their encounter with France proved to be a much tougher challenge.
Les Bleues asserted their dominance by flying into a three-goal lead within just 23 minutes in Adelaide. Kadidiatou Diani, Kenza Dali, and Eugenie Le Sommer scored within eight minutes and set the tone for the rest of the match.
Related: Colombia favored to win England
Morocco: one of eight debutants in 2023 to reach the Knockout Stage
The Lionesses earned distinction as the first North African or Arab team to qualify for a Women’s World Cup, overcoming the odds by progressing past the group stage at the expense of world number two-ranked Germany.
Their campaign even made cultural history, with Nouhaila Benzina becoming the first player to wear a hijab in a World Cup match against Colombia and France. However, Morocco was still unable to surpass France.
Among the African teams competing Down Under, Nigeria came closest to advancing to the quarterfinals, hitting the crossbar three times in an intense clash with England and taking the European Champions to a penalty shootout.
France’s next challenge lies against Australia, the co-host of the tournament alongside New Zealand. Australia’s Matildas secured their place in the quarterfinals by defeating Denmark 2-0, marked by the return of star striker Sam Kerr from a calf injury, making her first appearance in this World Cup.