By The Numbers: Canada, Morocco set to clash in final Group F game at World Cup
Canada heads into their third and final group stage match at the 2022 FIFA World Cup with no chance to progress into the knockout stages of the tournament, but there will still be plenty to play for when they face Morocco at Al Thumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar, on Thursday.
Alphonso Davies scored a historic goal for Canada just 68 seconds into their second game of the tournament against Croatia.
Not only was that goal the first for the country at a men’s FIFA World Cup, it also currently stands as the fastest goal scored at this year’s tournament.
Unfortunately, when Canada went on to lose the game, they became the first team since Denmark fell to Brazil at the 1998 tournament in France to be defeated after scoring the opener in the first two minutes.
On that occasion, Martin Jørgensen opened the scoring for Denmark in a quarterfinal contest they would lose 3-2 to the eventual tournament runners-up.
Canada will be playing their sixth men’s World Cup game on Thursday, across two competitions, and facing a non-European side for the first time.
During the 1986 tournament in Mexico they played Soviet Union, France and Hungary and so far in Qatar they have lined up against Belgium and Croatia.
Canada lost all five games and are still looking for their first point at a men's World Cup.
This will be Canada’s first match against a Confederation of African Football (CAF) team since they faced Morocco in a friendly in October of 2016.
Their last competitive match against an African side was at the 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup in South Korea and Japan where they suffered a 2-0 loss to Cameroon in the group stage of the tournament.
Morocco has captured two of the three meetings all-time against Canada with the teams drawing a June 1994 contest in Montreal.
Moroccan Abdelhamid SabiriWhile Canada will be saying goodbye to the competition following their Matchday 3 game against Morocco, their opponents are still alive and will advance into the Round of 16 if they avoid defeat on Thursday.
They can also advance with a loss, depending on the result of the other Group F game between Belgium and Croatia.
If they are able to progress, it would be their second time reaching the knockout stages at the men’s World Cup following the 1986 tournament, where they won their group before falling to Germany in the Round of 16.
If Morocco are able to beat Canada in their final round-robin game, it would be the first time the nation has won twice at a men’s World Cup. They earned a victory over Portugal in 1986, beat Scotland in 1998 and have knocked off Belgium so far in Qatar.
This will be Morocco’s first men’s World Cup game against a CONCACAF nation.