Spain, Morocco, squares off in a decider match

Spain, Morocco, squares off in a decider match

Spain and Morocco meets in a match that will decide who among them will book a ticket for the quarterfinals. This meeting will be the second to the last battle in the knockout stage, and the list for qualified teams are almost full. Their meeting will be on December 6, 2022, at 11:00 PM (GMT+8). Spain actually had an interesting journey for their Round of 16 qualification. They upset Costa Rica in a 7-1 victory, followed by a draw against Germany, and a loss against Japan. As for Morocco, they dominate their group stage, unbeaten in those three matches. They held a scoreless draw versus Croatia, and defeated Belgium and Germany.

Only three matches were played versus Spain and Morocco, but two were won by Spin, while the other one ended in draw. During the 2018 World Cup, they met in the group stage but their match ended in a 2-2 draw. However, when talking about official fixtures, Spain remains unbeaten against Morocco, and their first victory was in the 1961 World Cup qualifiers. Moreover, they remain unbeaten by any African groups in their last five group matches in the World Cup. As for Morocco, this is the only second time they will be playing in the Round of 16 in their history. Their first appearance was in 1986, but that appearance ended in a 1-0 defeat against Germany.

Spain will depend on their young squad

World Cup: Spain

Spain is a team who has a very young team, and they will parade it here in the knockout stage. They finished as second place in their group stage, after suffering a shocking defeat against Japan. As they aim to progress to the next round, they are hoping that their young squad can do the honor for their team. As they exit Russia 2018 in the last 16, they are hoping not to repeat the same mistake once again. After all, they have not suffered back-to-back exits in their history. Additionally, alongside England, they have the highest tallied goal with nine goals, so expect a shootout in this match.

On their training last Friday, they trained without the trio of Dani Olmo, David Raya, and Cesar Azpilicueta. However, it is believed that these three are just rested for this game, as there are no formal announcements made. If there is one doubtful for these three, it is Azpilicueta, who deals with a pain in his calf.

Morocco will continue to impress in the last 16

World Cup: Morocco
Photo courtesy of Imago Images

During their 2022 World Cup campaign, Morocco have been impressive, exceeding the expectations of them. In fact, they managed to be at the top of their group at the end of their group stage. On their last group stage, they had a 2-1 win over Canada, and they are expecting to achieve the same results here. On their group stage, they are able to win over Belgium, a proof that they are capable to upset giant teams in the tournament. This is only their second time entering the last 16, with their first was in 1986.

After Yassine Bounou felt unwell on their match against Belgium, Morocco is just glad to have him back in one of the most important match in their campaign. Moreover, Achraf Hakimi is expected to play here as well, despite an ankle problem.

Prediction:

Spain (1.0)
Odds: -0.90

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