The Moroccan national football team of local-based players has begun its quest to defend its African Nations Championship (CHAN) title with a 1-0 win against Togo.
The game took place today, January 18, at the Stade de la Reunification in Douala, Cameroon.
The Moroccan squad won the game thanks to a goal from the penalty spot by Wydad Casablanca player Yahya Jabrane at the 27th minute of the game.
The result puts the Atlas Lions at the top of Group C of this year’s CHAN, pending the end of the second first-round game, between Rwanda and Uganda.
Having won the 2018 CHAN in Morocco, the Moroccan team flew to Cameroon as one of the favorite teams to earn this year’s competition.
Today’s win puts the Atlas Lions in a comfortable position to secure qualification from the group stage to the quarter-finals.
Morocco will face Rwanda on Friday, January 22, in the second round of the group stage, before playing against Uganda next week, on January 26.
The teams competing against Morocco do not have a remarkable history in the CHAN competition.
However, as Moroccan coach Houcine Ammouta said in a recent statement to the press, the Moroccan national team needs to win all games to avoid any unpleasant surprises.
A second win in the competition on Friday would allow the Moroccan national team to put one foot in the quarter finals.
CHAN is a relatively recent competition, established in 2009. Unlike the more famous African Cup of Nations (CAN), CHAN does not allow national teams to have players who compete in foreign leagues. All the teams exclusively include players from local teams that compete in domestic leagues.