Rabat - While Morocco’s national football team expressed a high determination of winning ahead 2018 World Cup, Opta Sportsdata, the international sports analytics gave the Atlas Lions only 0.5 percent chances to win.
Rabat – While Morocco’s national football team expressed a high determination of winning ahead 2018 World Cup, Opta Sportsdata, the international sports analytics gave the Atlas Lions only 0.5 percent chances to win.
Opta Sport worked on a World Cup predictive model after the tournament’s final draw Moscow on December 1. According to theirpredictions, the Moroccan team is left with the narrow chance of 29.9 percent to qualify for the second phase of the world championship.
For Opta, the Atlas Lions will not reach the second round of the tournament. The sportsdata institution says that the Moroccan team is more likely to be placed in the bottom of Group B, that also includes Iran, Portugal and Spain.
The group was described as the “deadly group” in the competition. However, this does not appear to put off Herve Renard,Morocco’s team coach.
The Frenchman said that he is not satisfied with simply qualifying for the World Cup. “If the idea is to be satisfied with being there, it does not make sense.”
In an interview with French sports outlet L’Équipe, Renard said after the final draw that his team needs to defeat their future World Cup opponents – Iran, Spain, and Portugal – in order to develop [the team’s skills].
“If we want to grow, we have to beat the best one day. If we are not able to do so, we will stay at the same level,” said Renard. He added that it is “up to us to make sure to pass this round. Let us be lucid, but ambitious.”
Opta’s predictions placed Brazil and Germany as its top favorites.
On November 23, the Moroccan team made a significant jump in the 2017 World Ranking. After climbing eight places in October’s ranking, the Atlas Lions climbed an additional eight in November, to rank 40th in the world, and fifth in the African continent. The Moroccan team made this significant advance given to its great performance during the 2018 World Cup Qualifiers.
The Moroccan team will play its first match against Iran on June 15, while its second World Cup match will be against Portugal on June 20. Five days later, the Atlas Lions will face the spanish La Roja.
Will the Moroccan team proves Opta’s prediction wrong? The question will be settled next summer.