History-chasing Morocco want ‘no regrets’, says coach

Thursday, Dec 01, 2022

DOHA: Morocco coach Walid Regragui wants “no regrets” after facing Canada on Today, with his team aiming for qualification to the World Cup knockout stage for the first time since 1986.

The north African side reached the last 16 in Mexico 36 years ago for the only time in their history, and a point against already-eliminated Canada would see them repeat the feat.

Morocco are second in Group F, level on four points with leaders Croatia, who face Belgium, on three points, while Canada are bottom with no points.

“We don’t want to have an eye on the Croatia and Belgium match to decide our own fate, we (need to) give everything we’ve got so we have no regrets at the end,” Regragui told a press conference Wednesday.

“We’ll give everything we’ve got. Our players want to make history and will give 110 percent to ensure the Moroccan population is happy.”

Morocco players have been allowed to bring their families to the tournament and after the 2-0 win over Belgium on Sunday, Paris Saint-Germain defender Achraf Hakimi was pictured in an emotional embrace with his mother in the stands.

“Before we got here we had a strategy meeting, to bring families with us or not,” said Regragui.

“Based on our experience in 2018, along with our technical team, we chose the option to bring the families.

“Some players have kids, some would rather have their parents with them. We did a good job in that regard. When you win, there’s no negatives, everyone is happy, but if you lose they will say -- ‘Why did you bring the families?’

“We meet them after the game and then we concentrate on the next one.

“The spirit of family off the pitch, we want to bring that onto the pitch, and until now it’s functioning very well.”

African champions Senegal qualified from Group A after beating Ecuador on Tuesday and Morocco have a good chance to join them in the next round. “Senegal showed us a great path, we want to go through and move forward,” said Regragui.