The match between Morocco and Ghana opens the first matchday in Group C of the Africa Cup in Cameroon. The Stade Omnisport Ahmadou Ahidjo in the capital Yaoundé is the venue for the clash between the 28th and the 52nd in the FIFA rankings. Or, to put it another way: the continent’s number two and number eight will meet.
The Moroccan national team, coached by Bosnian Vahid Halilhodžić, took part in the Arab Cup in Qatar in December. There they lost to Algeria in the quarterfinals after penalties. This snapped a streak of twelve wins in which the Atlas Lions conceded one goal. The Ghanaian national team, with Serbian Milovan Rajevac on the sidelines, lost a test match against Algeria 0-3 in Qatar on Wednesday. After a 0-1 away defeat against Morocco in June, for the first time Ghana faced a comparable opponent.
What speaks for Morocco?
- The 1-0 in a test match against Ghana in June 2021
- The clearly greater quality in the squad
- A total of twelve wins in a row until the beginning of December
- The Atlas Lions only conceded a goal in one of those matches
What speaks for Ghana?
- Before the 0-3 defeat to Algeria, they collected three victories and a draw in the first four games with Rajevac
- Chelsea’s Hakim Ziyech missing from Morocco squad
- Can only surprise at present against the Atlas Lions
For the Africa Cup match, Morocco vs. Ghana, we have prepared an interesting expert betting tip with odds of 2.06. One betting site that offers this football bet is Betway.
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Expert analysis Morocco
Morocco are playing their first international match after almost exactly a month. The Atlas Lions lost to Algeria in the quarterfinals of the Arab Cup in Qatar on 11 December. Halilhodžić’s team equalized twice against the 29th ranked team in the world, but finally the Desert Foxes won on penalties. The Arab Cup matches are considered friendly matches. Therefore, the teams took part without the players who earn their money in Europe.
Moreover, the Algerian national team ended a winning streak of the Atlas Lions with twelve victories. Thereby, the Moroccan national team only conceded one goal in a 4-1 victory in Guinea in mid-October. And they subsequently played to nil in a 1-0 over 51st-ranked Saudi Arabia in early December. Before that, Morocco celebrated a home win over Ghana in June with the same result.
That was also when Hakim Ziyech made his penultimate appearance for the Atlas Lions so far. Due to disciplinary reasons, the Chelsea forward fell out of favour with Halilhodžić. Well, the Bosnian does not really have a reason to change his mind. For one thing, the almost flawless record speaks for his work. And for another, his team is full of players who are collecting precious experience in Europe’s top leagues.
We mean, for example, the defensive stars Achraf Hakimi of Paris Saint-Germain and Romain Saïss of Wolverhampton Wanderers. Furthermore, we find, among others, three players of Seville in the squad. Those are the forwards Youssef En-Nesyri as well as Munir El Haddadi and the goalkeeper Yassine Bounou.
Expert analysis Ghana
For Ghana, their first match at the AFCON comes five days after a 0-3 in the warm-up match against Algeria in Qatar. It marked Serbian Milovan Rajevac’s first defeat in his fifth appearance since returning to the Black Stars. The other side of the coin is that his team competed exclusively against opponents who are clearly to be placed below Morocco. After all, South Africa, Ethiopia, and Zimbabwe occupy the 68th, 121st and 137th places respectively in the FIFA rankings.
Rajevac had to live with the fact that many of his comparatively few experienced players are under contract in England and flew to the team only three days before. However, Thomas Partey (Arsenal) and Daniel Amartey (Leicester City) played from the start. Moreover, from June to September, the Black Stars failed to score in three of their last four appearances with Charles Akonnor on the sidelines. The only exception, a 1-0 over Ethiopia, came after the 0-1 in Morocco and a 0-0 home draw of against the 56th-placed Ivory Coast. Just a few days later, a 0-1 in South Africa followed.
So, the Ghanaian national team came back down to earth against Algeria. Now they face a team that is almost perfect defensively. We will see if the Black Stars learned from their 0-3 to the Desert Foxes and allow less against the Atlas Lions.
Head-to-head comparison Morocco – Ghana
The national teams of Morocco and Ghana met in a friendly match on 8 June 2021. The Atlas Lions celebrated a 1-0 home victory over the Black Stars. Defender Jawad El Yamiq of Spanish second division side Valladolid, who is not in the squad for the AFCON, scored the winning goal.
Morocco – Ghana: expert betting tip
Ahead of the Africa Cup match between Morocco and Ghana, our expert betting tip is that the Atlas Lions actually can only beat themselves. Halilhodžić’s team has a rock-solid defence and quality on the offensive. Of course, they lost to Algeria in the quarterfinals of the Arab Cup, but the Desert Foxes are no yardstick.
We saw this with the 0-3 defeat against Algeria on Wednesday. For Morocco’s opening match against Ghana, Rajevac will probably have all the stars under contract in Europe at his disposal. Nevertheless, we think Morocco will once again be too strong for Ghana.
Morocco vs. Ghana – our betting tip: Morocco wins, odds 2.06 at bookmaker Betway.
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