Morocco, Tunisia last African teams to qualify for World Cup

Posted November 13, 2017

Morocco is back in the spotlight of world soccer following the qualification of the country's national team to the 2018 World Cup, scheduled to take place next summer in Russian Federation.

The more industrious Moroccans caused more problems for their hosts five minutes later when Benatia slotted home Mbark Boussoufa's corner into the next to send the home fans into anguish, as the Lions sealed a first World Cup ticket since 1998.

Tunisia finished with 14 points in Group A of the African preliminaries, one ahead of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, who fell short despite a 3-1 win over Guinea in Kinshasa.

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Morocco and Tunisia booked their places at next year's World Cup finals on Saturday with both teams finishing unbeaten in their qualifying groups.

Morocco's win in Abidjan gave coach Herve Renard success over his former team and the country he led to the African Cup title in 2015. Before today's matches, Morocco had 9 points while the Ivorians had 8 points; meaning the victor of the match would qualify.

Guinea's Ousmane Sidibe headed into his own net while defending a set piece after the hour mark, but the visitors were able to equalise 10 minutes later when Keita Karamokoba pounced on a loose ball and flicked it over DR Congo goalkeeper Ley Matampi.

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Needing just a point at home to already-eliminated Libya to assure their progression, they labored to a goalless draw.

The teams of Saudi Arbia, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco were able to qualify for the World Cup, the World Cup since its inception in 1930 did not witness the presence of four Arab teams, where previously the maximum number of Arabs in the World Cup was three, back in 1986 and 1998.

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