In a surprising turn of events, Morocco, despite being a favorite in light of their 2022 World Cup semi-finalist status, suffered a defeat in the Africa Cup of Nations round of 16. They were beaten 0-2 by South Africa, a team that emerged as the superior side in the match.
South Africa’s Dominance
South Africa outshone Morocco by creating more scoring opportunities and clinically finishing in the second half of the game. Demonstrating their prowess, they proved to be the stronger team on the field.
The Crucial Goals
The opening goal of the match came from South Africa's Makgopa in the 57th minute. He executed a masterful shot that made its way between the Moroccan goalkeeper's legs, giving his team the lead.
However, the Moroccan team had a chance to equalize when they were awarded a penalty following a handball by a South African player. Unfortunately for Morocco, Hakimi failed to capitalize on this opportunity, his shot ricocheting off the bar in the 86th minute of the game.
Adding to the Moroccan side's woes, Amrabat was sent off, further weakening their stance. The final blow came in stoppage time when Mokoena, representing South Africa, took a free kick and netted the ball, sealing the South African victory.
What Lies Ahead
With this victory, South Africa are set to face Cape Verde in the quarter finals. As the tournament progresses, it is clear that the Africa Cup of Nations is proving to be more unpredictable than ever.