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WATCH: Bounou denies Busquets as Morocco reach World Cup quarter-finals

5:20 pm AEDT 7/12/22
Yassine Bounou Morocco 2022
Morocco had goalkeeper Yassine Bounou to thank as he saved two penalties to send them to their first ever World Cup quarter-final.
  • Bounou dived the right way twice to deny Spain in the shootout
  • The goalkeeper had made key saves to keep his side in the game
  • Sevilla shot-stopper was facing familiar foes from La Liga

WHAT HAPPENED? Bounou dived to his left to deny Carlos Soler before going the other way to save Sergio Busquets’ spot-kick and with Pablo Sarabia having hit the post, Spain were sent packing when Abdelhamid Sabiri, Hakim Ziyech and Achraf Hakimi scored to give Morocco a 3-0 shoot-out win.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Bounou kept Morocco in the game when he made two great saves in the second half and extra time to deny Spain. The Sevilla goalkeeper was coming up against players he knows very well from the Spanish top division where he has been playing since 2019.

It was a historic victory for Morocco who joined Cameroon (1990), Senegal (2002) and Ghana (2010) as the African nations to have reached the World Cup quarter-final. The Atlas Lions’ best-ever performance at the global tournament before Tuesday had been a round-of-16 appearance in 1986.

WHAT’S NEXT? Morocco will now face Portugal in the quarter-final on Saturday, seeking to become the first African team in the semi-finals.