Morocco subs strike late to earn shock win over Belgium in Qatar

Super-sub Abdelhamid Sabiri scored from an audaciously tight angle and fellow substitute Zakaria Aboukhlal added a second in stoppage time as Morocco pulled off a shock 2-0 win over Belgium in World Cup Group F on Sunday.

Sabiri’s free kick from near the corner flag caught out Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois at the near post as it curled in for the 73rd-minute winner, securing Morocco’s third-ever victory at the World Cup. Aboukhlal’s goal came on the counter-attack, set up by Hakim Ziyech as Belgium were caught pressing forward for the equaliser.

The North Africans also had the ball in the net with the last kick of the first half as Ziyech’s free-kick eluded everyone in the penalty area and caught Courtois unsighted, but a VAR check found skipper Romain Saiss had been just offside.

The result sees Morocco moved on to four points from two games with Belgium, second in the world rankings, on three. Canada and Croatia meet next.

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