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The Atlas Lions

Les Lions de l'Atlas

Latest News of The Atlas Lions

By The Atlas Lions, Apr 20 2019 03:56PM

(Goal.com) The 25-year-old scored his third league goal of the season to help the Sky Blues return to winning ways at Municipal de Balaidos


Sofiane Boufal impressed as Celta Vigo defeated Girona 2-1 in Saturday's Spanish La Liga game between the two sides.


After losing to Atletico Madrid last Saturday, the Sky Blues bounced back to winning ways with the Morocco international playing a key role in the match.


Boufal set up Iago Aspas for the opening goal in the 34th minute before Portu levelled for Eusebio Sacristan’s men 14 minutes later.


The 25-year-old was cautioned in the 70th minute before he was substituted for Andrew Hjulsager later in the game.


The victory saw Celta Vigo move to the 14th spot on the table after gathering 35 points from 33 games.


Boufal has now scored three goals in 31 league appearances this season and will hope to continue the form in their next game against Espanyol on Wednesday.


The midfielder, who has six caps for Morocco, will look forward to playing a part in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.


The Atlas Lions are in Group D along with Ivory Coast, Namibia and South Africa.



By The Atlas Lions, Apr 20 2019 09:58AM

(Goal.com) The Moroccan has garnered plenty of attention from top clubs with his displays for the Eredivisie side over the past three seasons


Hakim Ziyech has suggested he may not be ready to leave Ajax after this season comes to an end, saying he is "someone who is very picky".


The 26-year-old has been reported to have had admirers in the past thanks to strong seasons in the Eredivisie with FC Twente and later Ajax.


But Ziyech has seemingly taken things to a higher level this term for Ajax during a remarkable campaign for himself individually and the club as a whole.


The Morocco international has scored 19 goals and added 20 assists in all competitions, with Ajax in first place domestically and having sensationally defeated Real Madrid and Juventus in the Champions League knockout stage to advance to the semi-final round, where they will face Tottenham.


That form has led to increased reported transfer interest from around Europe, with Arsenal and Bayern Munich just two of the many teams linked with the 26-year-old.


Though many expect him to move on at season's end, Ziyech has warned he isn't necessarily ready to leave the Johan Cruyff Arena and only will seek an exit if the right situation appeals to him.


“Anything is possible," the attacking midfielder told Inside Ajax.


“I am always someone who is very picky and there must be a club that I want to trade in for Ajax. That doesn’t just happen.”


Ziyech, who joined Ajax from Twente in 2016, has a contract with the club through the 2020-21 season.


He is one of many players who the Dutch club will face a battle to keep past the season, with the likes of Matthijs de Ligt and David Neres among those drawing eyes from Europe's top sides, while Frenkie de Jong has already agreed to a move to Barcelona.


Ajax are currently level on points with PSV atop the Eredivisie table, and will take on Groningen in league play on Saturday.


Their Champions League semi-final with Spurs begins with the first leg on April 30, before the return leg a week later.

By The Atlas Lions, Apr 19 2019 02:25PM

(BBC Sport) Morocco's Abderrazak Hamdallah has broken the record for league goals in a season in Saudi Arabia, since it became professional in 2007.


He struck twice for Al Nassr as they beat Al Fateh 5-0 on Thursday to take his tally to 29 goals for the season.


The 28-year-old overtakes Al Ahli's Syrian striker Omar Al Somah who scored 27 in the 2015-16 season.


Only Saudi striker Hamzah Idris has scored more in a season with 33 in 1999-2000, before the professional era.


There are two more games left this season for Hamdallah to clinch the all-time record.


He was called up by Herve Renard for Morocco's internationals in March after a three-year absence but he was unable to accept the invitations due to family reasons.


He joins Baghdad Bounedjah in breaking a record in the middle east after the Algeria striker grabbed 39 league goals to help Al Sadd win the Qatari title.

By The Atlas Lions, Apr 18 2019 10:44AM

By Africanfootball.com


Former AFC Ajax midfielder Steven Pienaar says Moroccan star Hakim Ziyech is one of the most underrated players, and would be more highly regarded if he were European.


The 26-year-old Moroccan has been in consistently excellent form for the Eredivisie club through the 2018/19 season, racking up 19 goals and 20 assists in 42 games across all competitions.


Yet it is the likes of Dusan Tadic, Frenkie de Jong and Matthijs de Ligt which have earned most of the plaudits for the Amsterdam giants, particularly in their run to the UEFA Champions League semifinals which has seen them come through a group featuring Bayern Munich before eliminating two of the tournament favourites, Real Madrid and Juventus.


"Ziyech is one of the players that has been playing really well all season, he's the type of player that when you watch him in action, he makes you happy," Pienaar said at a Heineken UEFA Champions League event.


"He's a complete footballer, but underrated, you know if you're not European, you are always underrated."


Ziyech will look to continue his superb form for Ajax as they chase a treble of Eredivisie title, KNVB Cup and Champions League, before turning out for Morocco’s Atlas Lions at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.


By The Atlas Lions, Apr 16 2019 06:19PM

While a bad joke, the comment suggests that many in Egypt consider Morocco’s Lions as one of the toughest challenges standing in the way of the Pharaohs’ CAN 2019 aspirations.


By Morocco World News -


Rabat – Ahmed Shobair, a former Egyptian football star who now hosts one of Egypt’s most popular football shows, has made a bad joke about Morocco’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) prospects. The Egyptian said that he wishes Morocco’s Hakim Ziyech had been injured.


Speaking about what to expect from each of the CAN contenders on his “Malaab on” show aired on ON Sport, Shobair asked his guest which Moroccan player would be unavailable for the rest of the season due to a serious injury.


The guest correctly answered the trivia question. He pointed out that Achraf Hakimi, who recently suffered a metatarsal injury, is set to miss the remainder of the season with his German club, Dortmund, as well as his national team heading to Egypt for CAN in the summer.


Shobair commented, however, that he wished Hakim Ziyech had sustained the injury instead of Hakimi.


Revengeful for Real Madrid or worried for Egypt?

Since moving to Ajax in 2016, Ziyech has established himself as an invaluable starter. The 26-year old attacking midfielder feels comfortable in almost all positions demanding creativity and technical ease.


His consistently stellar performances with club and country have won him a good reputation, with many considering him as the creative mastermind of coach Herve Renard’s attack-minded Atlas Lions.


Shobair, however, a diehard Real Madrid fan, is said to be holding grudges against the Moroccan player for his role in the 4-1 home humiliation of the Spanish club during their Champions League second leg with Dutch club Ajax.


Ziyech scored Ajax’s first goal in what many Real Madrid supporters will remember as the team’s most spirit-crushing Champions League defeat in decades.


But the Egyptian’s comments did also carry a significant echo to the upcoming 2019 CAN to be played in Egypt between June 21 and July 19.

Shobair’s comments came in the wake of the CAN 2019 draw.


Morocco has been drawn in the competition’s “group of death,” while Egypt features in a fairly playable Group A along with Congo, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. But the prospects of a Morocco vs. Egypt game remain open for the later stages.


Based on their current FIFA standings, past CAN records, and recent matches, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal, and Algeria are largely considered to be the tournament’s favorites.

By The Atlas Lions, Apr 16 2019 06:17PM

By Morocco World News -


Rabat – French-Moroccan footballer Soufiane Boufal has surpassed Lionel Messi as the player with the most successful dribbles in Spain’s La Liga football league for the 2018/2019 season.


With 131 successful dribblings, Celta de Vigo’s Boufal is ahead of Messi (117) and Eibar’s Fabian Orellana (75).


Although Boufal made the most dribbles this year, he only scored two goals, one against Girona and one against Sevilla, according to the Spanish sports daily, Marca.


The 25-year-old attacking midfielder, who was born in Paris, joined the Celta de Vigo football club in western Spain on a loan for the from Southampton in the UK.


In order for Celta de Vigo to keep Boufal, they will have to negotiate a fee of €15 million as the club agreed with Southampton last summer.


Celta de Vigo is currently in 17th place out of 20 teams in La Liga’s standings.


The club is having a difficult season, struggling to stay in La Liga with only six matches left in the season.


Boufal made his debut with the Moroccan national team in March 2016 in a 1-0 Africa Cup of Nations qualification victory over Cape Verde. He also made two appearances with the Moroccan team in 2017 in friendly matches against Tunisia and Burkina Faso.

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