Thu, 09 Feb 2023

Ar Rayyan [Qatar], December 6 (ANI): An electric first half in a crucial round of 16 clash between Spain and Morocco ended goalless at the Education City Stadium on Tuesday.

The last time these teams met was in the 2018 World Cup in the group stages where it ended in a 2-2 draw and a similar battle ensued in the first half of the pre-quarterfinal here with both teams going all out for a place in the last-eight.

Spain started the half dominating as they controlled the initial minutes with greater possession. Morocco were awarded a free-kick in the 19th minute with Sergio Busquets committing a foul. The free-kick taken from 25 yards did not yield a goal as the ball went over the bar, failing to dip enough.

Marco Asensio made a brilliant run for the Moroccan box in the 26th minute, blazing past the defenders but could not convert his attempt at the goal as he was bound by a tight angle and was able to only find the side-netting.

Morocco made an attempt through Noussair Mazraoui in the 33rd minute as the player tried to score through a long-range kick but was kept at bay by the Spanish goalkeeper.

Spain looked to attack at any opportunity they found but the Moroccan defence kept their cool and defended superbly to avoid the 2010 champions from taking the lead. 'The Morocco players did find themselves within close range of the Spanish goal a few times in the dying minutes of the half but were unable to convert their chances.

A spirited effort from the Moroccans saw them keeping at par with the 2010 World Cup winners as the half ended 0-0.

Morocco defended in numbers to cramp the Spanish team and will look to do the same as they have been quite competent in doing that.

Spain on the other hand will look to come up with a plan to attack the Moroccan defence as they looked sharp and proved to be a menace for their forwards. (ANI)

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