Tanzania faces a significant challenge in their opening AFCON clash against Morocco. The East African side is aiming to secure their first victory in an AFCON tournament. On the other hand, Morocco, who are considered one of the favorites, are looking to break their 47-year drought and add to the single title they won in 1976. Despite their previous successes in the World Cup, Morocco has struggled to replicate that success in the continental competition. Their last appearance in the final was in 2004 when they lost to hosts Tunisia, and in the 2022 edition, they were eliminated in the quarter-finals by Egypt.
Morocco’s coach, Walid Regragui, wants his team to overcome the “curse of the African Cup.” He has named a 27-man squad, including both experienced players and younger talents for a “good balance between the present and the future.” Regragui emphasizes the importance of the state of mind and wants his team to play their football without feeling undue pressure. The match against Tanzania is set to take place at the Laurent Pokou Stadium in San Pedro.
Tanzania, on the other hand, is eager to improve their record against Morocco. They have lost four out of their five previous encounters with the Atlas Lions, managing only one victory. The East Africans will be looking to end their poor run and potentially cause an upset in line with the ongoing trend of underdogs performing well in the tournament.
The game kicks off at 2000EAT on Wednesday. It presents an important opportunity for Tanzania to make a strong start and assert themselves in the tournament. Morocco, however, will be aiming to make a statement of intent and kick-off their title quest with a convincing victory.