Today’s Predictions : Spain vs Morocco
Spain 2 – 2 Morocco
The 34th match of the FIFA World Cup 2018 is a mismatch between Morocco and 2010 World Champions Spain.
- Date : 25th June 2018
- Time : 11:30 PM (IST)
- Venue : Kaliningrad Stadium
As we move towards the third round of the group stage, we have Spain taking on Morocco, who have already been knocked out of the World Cup with 2 defeats. It is an important game for Spain as winning with a good goal difference will make sure they finish above Portugal in the standings.
FIFA World Cup Qualification
Spain were even more dominant in their Qualifiers, staying unbeaten throughout the phase, with 9 wins and 1 draw. ‘La Roja’ scored 36 goals and conceded just 3 in those 10 matches. Their biggest win was over Italy at the Bernabeu, with Real Madrid sensation Isco scoring a brace to earn a 3-0 victory for his nation.
Morocco breezed through their CAF Qualifying group without conceding a single goal. However, they drew their first 4 matches 0-0, before finally finding their rhythm and scoring 9 goals in their last 2 matches. A 3-0 victory over Gabon ensured their qualification ahead of the favourites Ivory Coast.
Morocco have been in stellar form over the last few months. With 5 wins and 1 draw in their last 6 games. They managed consecutive impressive victories against Serbia, Uzbekistan, Ivory Coast and South Korea, to prove they are no lightweights going into this tournament. Their most recent victory came against Slovakia this month. They have scored 11 goals and conceded just 3 in their last 6 matches.
Spain have been as solid as ever, staying unbeaten in their last 6 matches, with 3 wins, the biggest of which came against the mighty Argentina, who were mercilessly thrashed 6-1. They have several players in form, with 4 different players scoring 5 goals each in the qualifiers. Diego Costa scored twice against Portugal but couldn’t save them from dropping a point as the match ended 3-3.
World Cup So Far
Spain kicked off their 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign with one of the most exciting matches in recent international tournaments. Facing their Iberian rivals Portugal, Spain broke the deadlock with a brilliant opening goal from Diego Costa. However, a roller coaster match ensued, with Cristiano Ronaldo stepping up to score a hattrick, including a brilliant free kick to make the score 3-3. The battle for group winner is still very much open in this group as they could only beat Iran by 1 goal, while Portugal beat Morocco by 1 goal as well.
Morocco’s stellar unbeaten run of 5 wins and 1 draw in the last 6 games came to an abrupt end with a shock result against Iran. The Moroccans were fancied to take that game comfortably but missed several chances and were eventually punished in the most cruel manner possible, as an own goal in the dying minutes gave Iran an undeserved victory and ended Morocco’s unbeaten run. Portugal faced Morocco next and the North Africans were beaten 1-0 courtesy an early goal by Ronaldo.
Head To Head Record
These two nations have met 6 times before, with Spain winning the last 5 and their first ever match ending in a draw back in 1960.
Spain have dropped some of the biggest names in world football in their final 23-man squad, such is the talent at their disposal. Top players like Alvaro Morata and Cesc Fabregas, who could have walked into any other national side, could not find any place in the final squad. Spain do not have any significant injury scares, although their squad selection has been widely criticized.
Morocco’s young forward Mimoun Mahi was controversially dropped from the World Cup squad amidst high criticism. The rest of the team is filled with several players who were born outside the country but are eligible to play due to their ancestors being from the North African nation. In fact, 17 of the 23 players going to the world cup were born outside the country. The team has the perfect mix of youngsters and experienced veterans, and are hopeful of a good showing.
Players To Watch Out For
Spain still have an abundance of incredible talent at their disposal. While this may be his last international tournament, Andres Iniesta is still one of the best midfielders in the world and would be looking to be decisive again. Sergio Ramos and Gerard Pique form arguably the toughest center back pairing in the world, while Isco has elevated his game to another level in recent times. Diego Costa would be looking to fight for the golden boot after scoring a brace against Portgual.
Morocco have some brilliant footballers on their roster, none more so than captain Mehdi Benatia, who has played for two of Europe’s biggest clubs and is currently plying his trade for Juventus. Along with veteran defensive midfielder Karim El Ahmadi, Benatia was one of the major reasons behind Morocco’s excellent defensive record in the Qualifiers. Their main striker Hakim Ziyech recently won the Dutch Footballer Of The Year award after a prolific season for Ajax.
Morocco Vs Spain Betting Odds And Key Statistics
- Spain are massive favourites to win this match comfortably. Though they could only score 1 against Iran, and Morocco have a better defence than Iran.
- Morocco will be looking to finally score a goal in this tournament, after two back to back disappointing defeats which have seen them get knocked out.
- Spain usually have a tight defence, only undone by the very special Cristiano Ronaldo, and we expect them to keep a clean sheet in this match.
- Spain would be looking to relive their glory days which seemed to have disappeared after the 2012 Euro championships, and would be looking to go all the way in this tournament, improving their goal difference to get a lead on Portugal, who are also expected to beat Iran in their other match.
- We recommend betting on the both teams not to score market, as well betting on Diego Costa to score the first goal in the match, considering he has already scored 3 of Spain’s 4 goals in this tournament.
Diego Costa seems to be in great form for the Spaniards, and we expect him to score again in this fixture, though we do not expect a lot of goals in this match. Spain should comfortably win this match with the quality they possess.
Our Predicted Scoreline: Spain 2-0 Morocco