By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
France just set up a highly-anticipated 2022 World Cup grand finals against Lionel Messi and Argentina after thrashing and ending Morocco’s Cinderella run in the tournament, 2-0, in their semifinal duel last December 15, 2022.
The French booters not only broke through the first-ever African country to qualify in a World Cup semifinal but they also punched their second-straight championship game ticket.
France joined Italy, Brazil, and Argentina as the only reigning and defending champions that reached the last stage of the World Cup.
It didn’t take so much time for France to enter the scoring column of the match after Theo Hernandez found the back of the net approaching the fifth-minute mark.
During the 4:37 mark of the first half, Hernandez found a loose ball six yards to the left side of the penalty box and converted an insane left-footed kick.
It was pure euphoria for the French nation after the Hernandez conversion but the Moroccans pulled off a near equalizer five minutes after courtesy of Azzedine Ounahi.
Eager to get back into the match after getting drowned in France’s intensity, Morocco stayed within their highly-defensive strategy and prevented any goals from the French booters in the next 70 minutes of the match.
However, France doubled their lead with only 12 minutes left in the match as Randal Kolo Muani cashed in a short right-footed kick after receiving the well-timed cross pass inside the penalty box.
Morocco had plenty of chances to go for a goal but time wasn’t on their side and could only watch the star-studded French team celebrate with joy.
“Here we go again. It’s just an amazing feeling. We suffered a lot, especially in the second half. We played too deep and they showed they’re not a team only focused on defending. They know how to attack. They deserve a lot of credit for this World Cup. Now the last step, the most difficult,” said France’s captain Hugo Lloris.