Morocco vs South Africa Prediction: Morocco to excel to the quarterfinals

Morocco
Morocco
Start
Day
Hours
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Seconds
Finished
Live
30 Jan 2024 23:00
South Africa
South Africa
Africa Cup of Nations
Morocco vs South Africa
Stade de San Pédro
30.01.2024, 23:00



Sola Oluwasegun
29 Jan 2024
19:44
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Morocco vs South Africa Prediction, Betting Tips & Odds │30 JANUARY, 2024

The last game in the Round of 16 at the Africa Cup of Nations is scheduled for Tuesday night at Stade de San Pedro, featuring a match between Morocco and South Africa. The victor in this encounter will advance to the quarterfinals, where they will meet the winner between Cape Verde, who secured their spot by defeating Mauritania 1-0.

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Highly regarded as the leading contenders in the tournament even before the first kick, Morocco aims for its second AFCON title in history. The Atlas Lions lived up to expectations in their initial match by convincingly defeating Tanzania 3-0. However, their pursuit of a smooth progression faced a setback in the second game, resulting in a frustrating 1-1 draw against DR Congo, before concluding the group stage with a 1-0 victory over Zambia. Under Walid Regragui's management, the team accumulated seven points in the group stage, finishing four points ahead of the second-placed Congo DR. Now, their focus is on overcoming South Africa to secure a spot in the next round.

Bafana Bafana is a familiar opponent for Morocco, having faced them twice during the qualifying series for this tournament, with each team securing one victory. The Atlas Lions, who reached the quarterfinals in two of the last three AFCON editions (with 2019 being the exception), aspire to surpass their previous performances and match their best achievement of lifting the trophy in 1976.

South Africa secured their place in the round of 16 by finishing second in Group E with four points, tying with third-placed Namibia in points but holding a superior goal difference. Despite a discouraging start to their AFCON campaign with a 2-0 loss to Mali, Hugo Broos's team rebounded impressively with a commanding 4-0 victory over Namibia. They concluded the group stage with a goalless draw against Tunisia.

Bafana Bafana has reached the quarterfinals in two of their last three AFCON appearances and aspires to replicate that achievement when facing Morocco. In the head-to-head record, South Africa holds a slight edge in this fixture, securing three victories in eight meetings, with two losses and three draws completing the history. However, the Atlas Lions claimed victory in the last encounter between the two teams at AFCON. Nevertheless, this win stands as their only success in five historical matches in the tournament, with South Africa emerging victorious twice, and the other two matches ending in draws.

Morocco captured the world's attention with their impressive journey to the semifinals of the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Since Qatar, the North Africans have only suffered one defeat in the 12 games they've played, establishing themselves as potential pre-tournament favorites. Despite this, their AFCON performances have seen them fall short of the semifinals since finishing as runners-up in 2004. The Lions of Atlas received a boost with the reinstatement of Walid Regragui on the bench, as CAF lifted the 48-year-old's suspension.

South Africa faced a setback with a 2-0 opening-day defeat to Mali but rebounded to reach the current stage. As underdogs, the 1996 African champions may quietly fancy their chances, especially considering they were the only team to defeat Morocco in the qualifiers for AFCON 2023. Morocco, displaying a wealth of talent, has shown remarkable cohesion in the tournament. Therefore, I predict Regragui's side to advance with a narrow win and maintain a clean sheet.

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