Great joy spread again throughout the Arab countries, on Saturday evening, with the Moroccan national team crossing Portugal, with a historic qualification in the World Cup hosted by Qatar.
Morocco qualified for the semi-finals of the World Cup Qatar 2022 after defeating Portugal with a free goal in the “Al-Thumama” stadium in Qatar in the quarter-finals, making the “Atlas Lions” the first Arab and African team to achieve this achievement.
The Arab countries witnessed a similar joy, after the victory of the “Atlas Lions” team last week, over its Spanish counterpart, by penalty kicks, by three goals for free.
** Black Atlas
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Video clips were circulated on Twitter, highlighting the great joy of the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, after the victory of the Atlas Lions.
The Vice President of the UAE, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, tweeted, “No voice is louder than Morocco’s voice in the World Cup. Congratulations to all Arabs for achieving the Arab dream at the hands of the Moroccan lions.”
Libyan Prime Minister Abdel Hamid al-Dabiba said, through his Twitter account: “A thousand congratulations to the Moroccan national team for their historic qualification to the World Cup semi-finals.”
Saudi Sports Minister Abdel Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal congratulated Morocco, tweeting: “Congratulations to the brotherly Moroccan national team, and to Arab football, for this historic achievement by qualifying for the World Cup semi-finals.”
The Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman also congratulated Ambassador Ahmed Abu Zeid, in a tweet by Lions of the Atlas, saying: “My sincere congratulations to Morocco for the honorable victory of the national team, and the historic qualification for the semi-finals.”
After watching the match from the tent of the Qatari embassy in Amman, he congratulated the Speaker of the Jordanian Parliament Ahmed Safadi, saying that “the Moroccan victory sowed joy in the homes of Jordanians and raised the heads of all Arabs,” according to the official Jordanian News Agency.
Qatar’s Minister of Culture, Abdul Rahman bin Hamad Al Thani, said in a tweet: “We congratulate the Moroccan national team for this historic victory over the Portuguese national team (if) the Atlas Lions qualified for the golden square, the happiest of the fans, and confirmed that they are the Arab lions, and this is what makes us happy in Qatar.”
The Minister of Culture in the Lebanese caretaker government, Muhammad Wissam al-Murtada, tweeted, saying: “The hero and achievement is Morocco. As for the stronghold, it is the flag of Palestine (which Moroccan players used to raise after winning) the symbol of the oppressed. Lebanese News Agency.
** Artists and media
The Syrian singer Asala said: “A billion congratulations, our beloved Morocco, congratulations, heroes.”
Lebanese singer Nancy Ajram tweeted, “Morocco is all our pride. The Atlas Lions won the bet once again.”
Egyptian singer Angham said on her Twitter account: “The joy of all Arabs, the Lions of the Atlas, congratulations. May God be with you, O heroes of Morocco.”
Egyptian singer Hamza Namira tweeted, “Morocco is the pride of the Arabs. A thousand thousand thousand congratulations. Our hearts are all with you in the future, and God willing, it will be good.”
Emirati journalist and critic Ali bin Tamim said: “Thank you, the Atlas Lions. You wrote history again. You made what some thought impossible.
** Historical numbers
The Moroccan national team awaits in the next round the winner of the upcoming meeting between defending champion France and England, which is scheduled for later on Saturday evening.
And after its victory over Portugal with a goal without a response in the World Cup Qatar 2022, on Saturday, Morocco became the first Arab and African team to qualify for the semi-finals of the World Cup, and the first African team to qualify for the quarter-finals of the World Cup since 2010.
It is also the fourth African team to reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup, after Cameroon 1990, Senegal 2002, and Ghana 2010.
And the “Atlas Lions”, as the Moroccan national team is called, became the first African team to defeat Spain in the World Cup, since 1998 when it was defeated by Nigeria.