World Cup

France is ready for a wall of noise in the semifinals and is mindful of Morocco’s danger.

As the defending champions get ready for a harsh reception from the Maghreb side’s supporters on Wednesday, France will enter their World Cup semifinal matchup against Morocco with the utmost respect for their giant-killing opponents.

The Moroccan supporters will outnumber the French supporters at the Al Bayt stadium, and Les Bleus are aware that they will be booed and heckled the entire time.

“They’re benefiting from a huge support, I’ve seen this and my observers have told me about. We know it’s going to be extremely noisy, it’s part of the context and we’ll have to be ready for it,” France coach Didier Deschamps told a news conference on Tuesday.

“Good for them. We have to prepare for the game, but also for the environment of the game.”

Captain Hugo Lloris said: “We’re going to have to be ready for the noise”.

Morocco, the first African team in the World Cup semifinals, has benefited from the support of its supporters as they defeated Belgium, Spain, and Portugal, but France will be ready.

“I admire and respect what they’ve done here, they owe nothing to chance, they finished top of their group,” said Lloris.

“They have a lot of qualities on and off the pitch, in terms of cohesion. The environment will be hostile but we’re getting ready, calmly. We’ll have to be ready to up our level one more time.”

France will need to be patient against Morocco because they play a very compact 4-1-4-1 and the only goal they have ever given up was an own goal against Canada. France hopes to be the first team to score here against Morocco.

Instead of forward Kylian Mbappe, who will lack the space he needs, attacker Antoine Griezmann with his ability to play between the lines should be their finest player.

“Here’s another game where he’d better be good. He’s got this capacity to change the face of the team, with his technical touch, and the fact that he enjoys a good tackle as much as a good pass,” said Deschamps, who expects France to enjoy possession.

Morocco has a reputation for being extremely dangerous in rapid breaks and attacks, but France might also harm them in this way.

“We want to have the ball to create danger, but you saw that in our game against Poland (in the last 16) they actually had it more than expected,” said Deschamps.

“We’re as good as Morocco on the break and on fast attacks. We won’t abandon possession, but when we will have the ball we’re going to have to make it count.”

Later on Tuesday, the winner will take against either Croatia or Argentina.

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