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CHAN 2020: Morocco thrash host Cameroon to reach final

• Morocco took a significant step to clinch their second CHAN silverware and equal DR Congo’s record. 

Defending African Nations championship champions Morocco recorded the biggest win at the on-going continental tournament after a well-deserved 4-0 win against host Cameroon. 

The Atlas Lions of Morocco have reach their second successive final as they prepare to defend their title against the Eagles of Mali.  

Morocco produced a polished performance to score twice in both halves of the game and deny Cameroon hopes of clinching their maiden CHAN silverware on home soil. 

Soufiane Bouftini opened the scoring for the North Africans while current top scorer Soufiane Rahimi doubled his tally. He later capped off a brilliant display with a brace in the second half before his team mate Mohamed Ali scored a late controversial goal to seal a win at the Limbe Omnisport Stadium on Wednesday night.  

Morocco’s backline was the busiest defence of the two teams from the start and they produced a great block to repel threats from Cameroon. But the Atlas Lions were the first to create the game’s glaring opportunity midway into the first half. 

Haschou Kerrido made two fantastic saves to prevent Morocco from taking an early lead. Soufiane Rahimi drilled a low shot towards the Cameroonian keeper who later denied Ayoub El Kaabi from converting an easy tap-in.  

But he later committed a blunder when he failed to keep out Omar Namsaoui’s free-kick and inexplicably released the ball which gave Morocco’s centre-back  Soufiane Bouftini space to slot in the ball in an empty net. 

Ayoub El Kaabi’s split pass enabled Abdelilah Hafidi set-up Soufiane Rahimi who doubled Morocco’s advantage with his sublime one time finish at the far edge of the post. Cameroon had a handful of chances to get an unlikely equalizer. They only mustered a single shot during the first half which wasn’t on target. 

But they faded form and provided the great riposte during the second half. They poured forward regularly with their offensive play highly commendable. However, they failed to make possession count despite the entry of Mfede Junior and Rayonne Mbougain and later Franck Ondoa Edima 

But they committed another mistake and gifted Morocco the third goal. Etame Ngombe gave a wrong pass towards Banga Bindjeme that Rahimi intercepted and then exploited to hit the ball at the back of the net as Haschou Kerrido watched the ball roll in calmly. Mohamed Ali Bemammer then completed the scoring from Hamza El Moussaoui’s cross which was validated by the Video assistant referee although he seemed offside. 

Substitute Walid El Karti almost got a fourth but his efforts was clapped out by Haschou Kerrido. He also prevented Morocco from getting a late goal deep into extra-time of the second half. 

Morocco will face Mali in the final of the 2020 African Nations Championship on the 7th of February at the Ahmadou Ahidjou Stadium in Yaounde. A win for the defending champions will imply they will become the first team to win back-to-back titles and also equal DR Congo’s record of two CHAN trophies. 

The intermediate Lions and Guinea will clash in the third position game in Douala on Saturday.  

FULL TIME 

Morocco 4-0 Cameroon

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