Preview: Liberia vs. Morocco

Preview: Liberia vs. Morocco

Liberia get their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualification campaign underway when they take a trip to the Stade Mohammed V to square off with Morocco on Monday.

The Atlas Lions, on the other hand, head into the game fresh off the back of an opening-day victory over South Africa and will look to keep the juggernaut rolling.

Liberia were last in action on March 29, when they fell to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Burundi in a friendly fixture at the Mardan Sports Complex.

Bonfils-Caleb Bimenyimana struck twice in the opening 37 minutes to put Les Hirondelles ahead going into the interval before Divine Teah pulled one back three minutes into the second period.

Prior to that, Liberia were on the receiving end of a 4-0 thrashing against Benin on March 24 before suffering a 1-0 loss to Sierra Leone three days later.

The Lone Star are looking to secure their third-ever appearance at the Africa Cup of Nations and their first since 2002, when they picked up two draws and lost one of their opening three games to suffer a group-stage exit.

Peter Butler’s men head into Monday’s game on a run of seven defeats in their last eight outings across all competitions, with a 3-1 victory over Central African Republic in November 2021 being the exception.

This poor run has been owing to their defensive frailties as Liberia have conceded 15 goals in that time, while netting five at the opposite end of the pitch.

Morocco, on the other hand, kicked off their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign in style as they came from behind to see off South Africa 2-1 at the Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium last Thursday.

Lyle Foster’s eighth-minute strike saw the Bafana Bafana head into half time with a slender lead, but Sevilla’s Youssef En-Nesyri and 28-year-old Ayoub El Kaabi struck in the second period to turn the game on its head.

Morocco are now unbeaten in each of their last three competitive outings across all competitions — a win which saw them secure a place in the upcoming World Cup courtesy of a 5-2 aggregate victory over Congo DR in March’s qualification playoffs.

Vahid Halilhodzic’s men, who clinched their only AFCON crown way back in 1976, have won each of their last eight games on home turf, scoring 19 goals and conceding two in that time.

Liberia form (all competitions):
LLWLLL
Morocco Africa Cup of Nations Qualifying form:
W
Morocco form (all competitions):
WLDWLW

We say: Liberia 0-2 Morocco
Morocco head into the game as firm favourites against a Liberia side who have lost seven of their last eight outings in all competitions. The Atlas Lions have been superb on home turf and we predict they will maintain this solid run and see off the floundering visitors.

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