Praise for Morocco despite World Cup defeat by France

Moroccan fans have heaped praise on their football team’s performance despite Wednesday night’s World Cup semi-final 2-0 loss to France.

The team made history by becoming the first African and Arab nation to reach this stage of the competition.

Morocco’s King Mohammed VI led fans in showing support to their team after the game with a thank you tweet:

French President Emmanuel Macron also praised the Moroccan team for their history-making run at the World Cup.

“To our Moroccan friends: congratulations on this beautiful journey. You are making football history,” he tweeted.

US President Joe Biden said “it was remarkable to watch how much this team has been able to achieve”.

French striker Kylian Mbappe told Moroccan defender Achraf Hakimi, who is also his teammate at French club PSG, that “everybody is proud of what you did, you made history”.

The BBC’s Mayeni Jones watched the match from Morocco’s western city of Casablanca and says the team has galvanised support across age groups and in the wider region.

She spoke to fans who were full of pride of the team’s performance.

Mohamed Berrada, a local sports reporter, said: “Very proud of my country, very proud of the team. Unfortunately we lost our captain in the first 20 minutes. I’m disappointed but proud.”

Adil, a French-Moroccan who supports the African side because he was born there said: “Always Morocco, we never give up, never. We had the best team, best played. They played better than the French.”

The Morocco team will play their last match on Saturday against Croatia in the third-fourth place play-off.

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