Preview - Serbia vs Morocco 24 March 2018

Started by Harry85, Mar 23, 2018, 01:54 AM

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Harry85

International Friendly
Serbia vs Morocco
Saturday, March 24th, 2018
03:30am (GMT +8 Timing)
Stadium: Stadio Olimpico

Serbia:
Last five matches form: W L W W D
Average goals per match: 2.0
Average goals against per match: 1.0
Top scorer: Branislav Ivanović and Dušan Tadić (11)

Morocco:
Last five matches form: W D W W W
Average goals per match: 1.6
Average goals against per match: 0.1
Top scorer: Ayoub El Kaabi (9)

The World Cup bound Serbia and Morocco clash in a warm up friendly to be held in Turin this weekend, with both sides looking to make their final preparations ahead of the big one in Russia.

Morocco's near faultless qualification campaign was built upon the meanest defence in the African section, and the Atlas Lions will no doubt be eager to maintain that defensive solidity in the run up to the tournament. They may well have their work cut out here though with Serbia's frontman Aleksander Mitrović in scintillating form at the minute, seeming to be revitalised since joining Fulham on loan from Newcastle.

Serbia also qualified fairly comfortably in the end from a competitive section containing Wales, Republic of Ireland and Austria, and will represent a step up in quality when compared to the standard of opposition Morocco faced in their qualification group.

As winners of the most recent African Nations cup, Morroco will have high hopes of carrying that tournament form into Russia. They were certainly impressive on route to lifting that trophy, particularly when thumping Nigeria 4 - 0 in the final, but it will be interesting to see how they fare against a technically solid and well organised Serbian outfit. We wouldn't be surprised to see these two sides cancel each other out for large periods and suspect this one may end up in a draw.


Prediction: Serbia 1 - 1 Morocco

Harry85

Half time: 1 - 2
Full time: 1 - 2
Shots: 11 - 3
Shots on target: 3 - 1
Corner Kicks: 7 - 3
Possession: 56% - 44%

Purely on the statistics, Serbia can count themselves a little unlucky to have lost this one having bossed the possession and total shots stats.

Morocco did however impress at times with their speed on the counter attack and it was a slick passing move which led to the opener in the 29th minute. Nordin Amrabat being played in on the right hand side of the box before being brought down just as he appeared to be running the ball out of play. A silly foul to give away but a penalty kick nonetheless. Hakim Ziyech did the honours, calmly slotting home into the bottom corner. 0 - 1.

In the 37th minute Morocoo gave the ball away in midfield and Serbia sprung into life, showing excellent movement and passing around the edge of the area before Adem Ljajic played in Dusan Tadic who narrowly stayed onside to slot under Mohamedi. 1 - 1.

Parity didn't last very long though. In the 39th minute Ziyech played in a beautiful ball from the right to leave the Serbian defence all at sea. Khalid Boutaib seemed to know exactly where the ball was heading though, arriving at just the right moment to head past Marko Dimitrović. 2-1 at half time and 2-1 it stayed, with Morocco shutting up shop to impressive effect in the second half.

On this evidence Morocco are a side not to be underestimated at the finals. The African Nations Champions are unlikely to dominate many opponents, but are well organised and solid in defence and possess enough pace and quality on the break to present a real danger on the counter attack.

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