Tuesday, 21 November, 2017

Defenders book Morocco's place at World Cup

Tunisia, Morocco, reach Russia 2018 Ivory Coast 0-2 Morocco
Elias Hubbard | 12 November, 2017, 02:10

Morocco qualified for the global showpiece after defeating Cote d'Ivoire 2-0 away in Group C on Saturday, while Tunisia got through after a 0-0 draw with Libya in Rades.

Marc Wilmots' Ivory Coast needed a win at home to qualify for their fourth consecutive World Cup, but two errors by goalkeeper Sylvain Gbohouo put chances of victory out of reach in the first half.

Morocco sealed its place in Russian Federation in style as they went to Abidjan and beat Cote d'Ivoire 2-0.

The 2004 African champions have now qualified for their fifth World Cup (1978, 1998, 2002, 2006).

Nabil Dirar scored the opener in the 25th minute with an inswinging cross that went untouched through the box and entered the net.

Morocco qualified for the first time since the 1998 World Cup.

Ivory Coast was already in decline after being eliminated by Renard and Morocco in the group stage of this year's African Cup, where the Ivorians were defending champions.

It is the fifth time that the Moroccan national football team gets qualified for the worldwide FIFA competition.

Tunisia, meanwhile, progressed as winners of Group A despite not being able to end their campaign with victory over Libya, who finished bottom.

DR Congo, meanwhile, had needed Libya to pull off a shock win to give them hope of making it to Russian Federation, but were left disappointed despite a 3-1 win over Guinea in Kinshasa, scoring twice in stoppage time.

Ibenge's side will look back at their double header against the Tunisians, when they enjoyed the better of both contests but only took one point out of a possible six, as the reason why they will be watching on from the outside next summer.

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