atlas lions logo 1Maroc_Mali

The Atlas Lions

Les Lions de l'Atlas

Latest News of The Atlas Lions

By The Atlas Lions, Dec 6 2018 02:23PM

December 6 – The Egyptian Football Association (EFA) has pulled out of the bidding race for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, saying it “will not compete with another Arabic country.” Morocco and South Africa remain as favourites to host the continent’s flagship competition.


Last week Cameroon were stripped of the tournament’s hosting rights over delays in preparations. CAF president Ahmad Ahmad revealed that the confederation would strive to “determine a new organising country by the end of the year.”


Egypt, Morocco and South Africa soon stepped forwards as potential hosts for the 24-team event. Cameroon, who won the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations defeating Egypt 2-1 in the final, had been awarded the 16-team finals, but CAF then unilaterally increased the number of participants in July 2017 to 24 teams during a symposium held in Morocco.


EFA will however not bid to stage the tournament. “After an EFA meeting on Tuesday, we decided we will not make a bid for the next Afcon,” said EFA board member and spokesman Ahmed Megahed. “We will not compete with another Arabic country – this is an official decision.”


The decision leaves Morocco and South Africa, who have both confirmed an interest in hosting, as two remaining contenders in the bidding race. Egypt last hosted the tournament in 2006 when they won on home soil.


Earlier this year the Moroccans had stepped in to host the African Nations Championship, CHAN, after Kenya had been deemed unfit to host the tournament. Morocco, with their team of home-based players, won the tournament, which was largely considered a success. In June Morocco, however, lost out to the United States, Mexico and Canada for the 2026 World Cup hosting rights. It was the fourth time that the Moroccans had their World Cup dream thwarted.



By The Atlas Lions, Dec 5 2018 01:44PM

Algerian sports journalist Hafid Derradji has lambasted his country’s unreadiness to host sports events like the 2019 African Cup of Nations (CAN).


By Morocco World News


Rabat – The beIN Sports journalist Hafid Derradji, said that Algeria’s silence is proof that Algeria is not ready to host sports events, including the World Cup and CAN, due to lack of infrastructure and lack of world-class venues.


Derradji made his remarks during a phone interview on Algerian sports television program “Al Hassad Al Ryadi.”


He added that he feels sorry for his country for not even being able to host a “chess competition,” emphasizing that Morocco is “scoring positive points” in terms of infrastructure.


On November 30, Derradji said: “We said it already. Cameroon will not host CAN 2019. Morocco will host it and no one else.”


In 2017, Derradji mocked the Algerian football federation, andhe speculated that the Confederation of Africa Football (CAF) will announce Morocco as the official host of the CAN, replace Cameroon.


The journalist sarcastically added that “[t]he Algerian president of the football federation, Khierdine Zetchi, announced days ago that Algeria is ready to replace Cameroon…. Good morning.”


Some of the speculation about CAFwas proved true, as it announced its decision to strip Cameroon ofthe right to host the African tournament.


CAN, also called AFCON, will take place June 15 to July 13, 2019. CAF has now launched a new bidding process to appoint another host for the African tournament.


Both Morocco and South Africa might try to seize the opportunity to host the event s after Cameroon’s failure to retainhosting rights due to delays in completing projects and building venues for 2019 CAN.

By The Atlas Lions, Dec 5 2018 01:42PM

By Morocco World News


After CAF’s decision to strip the CAN hosting rights from Cameroon, several African countries will now submit their bid as a replacement host.


Rabat – The Confederation of African Football (CAF) might consider Morocco as an alternative host to Cameroon. The head coach of the national football team, Herve Renard, believes that Morocco is the right choice to host the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (CAN).


Renard believes that Morocco is ready in terms of infrastructure to host the African tournament. The coach expressed his hope for Morocco to be designated as host country for CAN 2019 “even if it will add extra pressure.”


Cameroon lost eligibility to host the competition after inspections of the country’s sports venues revealed that it was not ready to host the tournament. CAF will now start a new bidding process to appoint another host for the CAN, which will take place from June 15 to July 17.


While Morocco repeatedly supported Cameroon’s bid before CAF made its decision, the North African country might compete with South Africa and other countries to host it.


Morocco’s successful experience in hosting the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) might help Morocco clinch the rights to host CAF’s flagship tournament.


Morocco’s Atlas Lions will take part in the CAF competition after a well deserved qualification.


Fouzi Lekjaa, head of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) said that although the national team has had several exceptional generations of teams, Morocco has not been able to win the CAN since 1976.


He added that Morocco’s Atlas Lions and coach Herve Renard have received criticism. Lekjaa then called on critics to stop the “sterile criticism. We trust Herve Renard who has brought a lot to the Atlas Lions.” He also called for unity and support for both the coach and team.


Morocco’s football team has delivered several solid performances, especially at the 2018 World Cup in their games against Portugal and Spain.


In the 2019 CAN qualifiers, Morocco also received applause from their fans after they “broke the curse” and beat Cameroon 2-0.

By The Atlas Lions, Nov 28 2018 04:17PM

By Soka25east.com


The North African Football Union (UNAF) wants the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to move the hosting of the 2019 African Cup of Nations from Cameroon to Morocco.


UNAF says Cameroon seems more than likely to withdraw, and the union is placing pressure on CAF to make sure that the first-ever, 24-team tournament is not held under difficult conditions or in half-finished stadiums. As a meeting of the CAF Executive Committee nears, where crucial decisions are expected, the region’s football union supports the “rescue mission” envisaged by Morocco.


According to Algerian papers, the Kingdom of Morocco wants to come to the rescue for the second time after the African Nations Championship was withdrawn from Kenya in 2018, and they can count on “the support of Tunisians, Egyptians, Libyans and especially Algeria”.


Last week, Algerian media, including the daily Le Buteur, already wrote that the tournament will be held in Morocco, not in Cameroon, the country chosen by CAF to host next year.


“According to information in our possession, the AFCON 2019 will take place next June on Moroccan soil and not in Cameroon, because of the great delays in the construction and renovation of infrastructure,” reports Le Buteur in its Wednesday’s edition.


CAF’s President Ahmad had reportedly raised the possibility of holding the 2019 tournament in another country, if Cameroon is not able to finish the preparatory work in time.

By The Atlas Lions, Nov 17 2018 02:36PM

(BBC Sports) Morocco qualified for next year's Africa Cup of Nations without kicking a ball on Saturday as Comoros beat Malawi 2-1.


The Atlas Lions qualify with a game to spare after beating Cameroon 2-0 on Friday in Casablanca.


Hakim Ziyech scored twice to condemn the African champions to their first defeat under Clarence Seedorf.


"Congratulations to players and staff for this brilliant qualification," tweeted Morocco coach Herve Renard.


The final round of Group B games take place in March, with Cameroon assured their place as Nations Cup hosts.


The Indomitable Lions are participating in the qualifiers to ensure competitive match practice and they sit second in the group with 8 points, two fewer than Morocco, while Comoros rise to five points, one more than Malawi.


The win is only the third for Comoros in Nations Cup qualifying history, following on from victory over Mauritius in the 2019 preliminary phase as well as a 1-0 win over Botswana in 2017 qualifying.

RSS Feed