All five of their prior encounters were friendly games, and France has never lost against Morocco (W3 D2). In November 2007, the most recent meeting ended in a 2-2 tie in Saint-Denis.
In its six World Cup encounters with African countries, France has alternated between winning and losing, most recently falling 1-0 to Tunisia in this year’s group stage. In the history of the World Cup, no team has ever suffered defeats to two distinct African opponents.
In fact, this match will be the first World Cup semifinal played by an African team. Morocco is attempting to become the first African country to reach the World Cup final.
After being eliminated from each of their first three World Cup tournaments (1958, 1982, and 1986), France is currently playing in their seventh World Cup semifinal. They have won each of their last three games to get to this point (1998, 2006, 2018).
Morocco is yet to allow an opponent to score against them during the 2022 World Cup, and their sole goal surrendered came from an own goal against Canada. At this competition, they have kept four clean sheets, and the last two teams to do so in a single edition won the championship (Spain 2010, Italy 2006).
The greatest winning streak in World Cup history for an African nation is six World Cup games for Morocco (W3 D3).
France is attempting to become the first defending champions to reach the World Cup final since Brazil in 1998, despite conceding in each of their last six games. Italy was the last country in Europe to do so in 1938.
In the 2022 World Cup, Morocco has made more tackles (104) and clearances (137) than any other team. Only Ecuador had a worse percentage of shots that were on target (20% – 4/21) than the nine that they have faced in this tournament.
13 of France’s 17 World Cup games under manager Didier Deschamps have ended in victories (D2 L2). With a win here, he would tie Luiz Felipe Scolari for second most World Cup manager victories with 14, one behind Helmut Schön.
In his last eight World Cup starts, Antoine Griezmann has contributed to eight goals (3 goals, 5 assists), including both of France’s goals in their 2-1 quarterfinal victory against England. Seven of these eight involvements took place during the competition’s knockout rounds.
Olivier Giroud has scored four goals so far at the 2022 World Cup. If he scores today, he will become the oldest player to score five goals in a single World Cup. Kylian Mbappé has scored five goals so far, making France the first side since Brazil in 2002 to have two players score five or more goals in a single World Cup (Ronaldo and Rivaldo).
When Youssef En-Nesyri scored the game-winning goal against Portugal in the quarterfinals, Morocco’s record for most World Cup goals was broken (3). After Roger Milla in 1990 (4), Papa Bouba Diop (5), and this tournament, he has scored two of his three goals. He could become just the fourth African to score three or more goals in a single World Cup edition.
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