2018 CHAN hero Ayoub El Kaabi tops Morocco 2018 World Cup squad

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The 24-year-old forward has been given a chance to prove himself on the world stage with the Atlas Lions in Russia while Sofiane Boufal was excluded

Ayoub El Kaabi has been included in Herve Renard's final 23-man squad for the 2018 Fifa World Cup.

El Kaabi shot into prominence after his nine goals powered the Atlas Lions to lift their first African Nations Championship title in February, a feat which earned him the Man of the Tournament and top scorer honours.

He got his first international goal for the A team in their 2-0 victory over Uzbekistan in March's friendly match. He is joined by Khalid Boutaib, Nordin Amrabat and Hakim Ziyech in the six-man attack.

Southampton winger Sofiane Boufal has not played a match since March 31, so was excused from the team owing to lack of playing time in the English Premier League.

Real Madrid's Achraf Hakimi, Juventus’ Medhi Benatia, Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech are among the selected players for Morocco’s fifth appearance at the World Cup.

The Atlas Lions have been zoned in Group B alongside Iran, Portugal and Spain. Herve Renard's side begin their campaign on June 15 at the Krestovsky Stadium, Saint Petersburg.
 

FULL SQUAD

Goalkeepers: Mounir El Kajoui (Numancia), Yassine Bounou (Girona), Ahmad Reda Tagnaouti (Ittihad Tanger)

Defenders: Mehdi Benatia (Juventus), Romain Saiss (Wolves), Manuel Da Costa (Basaksehir), Badr Benoun (Raja Casablanca), Nabil Dirar (Fenerbahce), Achraf Hakimi (Real Madrid), Hamza Mendyl (LOSC)

Midfielders: M'barek Boussoufa (Al Jazira), Karim El Ahmadi (Feyenoord), Youssef Ait Bennasser (Caen), Sofyan Amrabat (Feyenoord), Younes Belhanda (Galatasaray), Faycal Fajr (Getafe), Amine Harit (Schalke 04)

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Forwards: Khalid Boutaib (Malatyaspor), Aziz Bouhaddouz (Saint Pauli), Ayoub El Kaabi (Renaissance Berkane), Nordin Amrabat (Leganes), Mehdi Carcela (Standard de Liege), Hakim Ziyech (Ajax).

Reserve

Oualid El Hajjam (Amiens), Youssef En Nesyri (Malaga), Noussair Mazraoui (Ajax).

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