March 19, 2018

Morocco, Tunisia Last African Teams to Qualify for World Cup

13 November 2017, 08:26 | Opal Carroll

Tunisia midfielder Wahibi Khaziri battles with Libya's Mohamed Al Ghanodi during their draw

Tunisia midfielder Wahibi Khaziri battles with Libya's Mohamed Al Ghanodi during their draw

North African nations Morocco and Tunisia took contrasting routes on Saturday as they qualified for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.

Among all the national teams that competed for the qualification to the World Cup in the different continental federations belonging to FIFA, Morocco has emerged as the team with the best defense in the world.

Belgium has a large Moroccan community, making up 4 per cent of the population.

Unlike Morocco, who missed out on four previous World Cup tournaments (Japan-Korea 2002, Germany 2006, South Africa 2010 and Brazil 2014), Cote d'Ivoire has qualified for the three previous World Cups.

They were forced to use a water canon to stop the mob launching stones and smashing glass. Street signs and furniture were also destroyed or damaged.

Videos posted on social media showed tense scenes as riot police tried to block off streets to the fans as others chanted joyfully from the steps of the Bourse stock exchange building, a usual spot for sports celebrations.

Three US carriers lead naval drill aimed at North Korea
In recent months, North Korea has tested intercontinental ballistic missiles and conducted it's most powerful nuclear test. But experts doubt China will take the kind of steps that Trump wants, such as halting crude oil exports to the North.

An AFP reporter on the scene said calm had mostly returned by 2030 GMT, about two hours after the end of the match, though a heavy police presence remained through the night.

Interior Minister Jan Jambon said on Twitter: "Unacceptable aggression in the centre of Brussels".

The qualification, which came 19 years since Morocco played its last World Cup in 1998 in France, has enabled the Atlas Lions to retrieve their lost aura and respectability in Africa.

Rivals DR Congo were the only team who could catch Tunisia, but despite a last-gasp 3-1 victory over Guinea they failed to grab a berth in the finals.

Morocco completed the campaign without conceding a goal, finishing on 12 points, four ahead of the Ivorians.

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