World Cup as it happened: Morocco beat Spain on penalties

Stalemate in normal time after Spain miss all their penalties in dramatic encounter


The final moments of the shootout:

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Fourth penalty for Morocco, Hakimi scores! Panenka!

Morocco have beaten Spain! Unbelievable scenes in the stadium!

Spain are out of the World Cup, 76 per cent possession but they couldn’t break down the Moroccan wall. And then a series of terrible penalties by Spain. What a story for Morocco, their first ever quarter-final in the World Cup. The team throw up the goalkeeper Bono as the hero.


Third penalty for Morocco, Benoun... misses! Good save by Simon as he goes the right way.

Third penalty for Spain, Busquets... misses! Bono goes the right way again! Unbelievable

Morocco 2 Spain 0


Second penalty for Morocco, Ziyech... scores! Straight down the middle.

Second penalty for Spain, Soler... misses! Poor penalty is saved by Bono!

Morocco 2 Spain 0


First penalty, Sabiri for Morocco... scores, sends the keeper the wrong way!

First Spain penalty, Sarabia for Spain... misses! Hits the post!

Morocco 1 Spain 0


Who do you fancy in the penalty shootout? Morocco win the toss on who to go first and they will go first for the penalties.


AFTER EXTRA TIME: Morocco 0 Spain 0

We’re going to penalties. Such drama. Morocco really hung on at the end there, Sarabia making a big late difference.


ET 30 mins: Corner for Spain after good running by Llorente. Ounahi off for Benoun, Sarabia on for Spain. Some desperate clearances. Morocco hanging on, can they get to penalties? Amazing ball in by Sarabia... and it almost goes in the net... deflected off the Morocco keeper and he’s beaten but it just goes wide! Then one last chance! Looping cross to back post and Sarabia hits the post! What a finish.


ET 28 mins: Morocco’s two substitutes trip up each other, Morata breaks, Spain together in three or four but Morata does nothing and overhits the pass. Poor. Then later Williams runs at the defender at full speed and hits for the back post but the ref says the ball was out of play.


ET 26 mins: Morocco break with Cheddira after great play by Amrabat... but he can’t get a shot away, poor play.


ET 24 mins: Luis Enrique has revealed Spain have taken 1,000 penalties in training to avoid World Cup shootout heartbreak. So don’t doubt they will be well prepared if it gets to that stage.


ET 22 mins: Saiss down injured, he’ll have to be replaced. Been a gruelling game. He refuses to go on but they strap him up and he might be coming back on.


ET 19 mins: Enrique giving out about Morocco time wasting to no avail. Amrabat still battling, almost nicks the ball in midfield.


ET 16 mins: Morocco bizarrely shoot straight from kickoff, Sabiri hits it miles wide, don’t see that too often.


ET 15 mins +1: Corner for Spain, keeper comes out a long distance and claws it away, the shot is blocked

HALF-TIME IN EXTRA-TIME: Morocco 0 Spain 0


ET 15 mins: Best chance of extra time for Morocco! Cheddira. Ounahi plays him in through on goal... but he hits it straight at the keeper in the box and Simón saves with his leg! What a chance, was that the moment?


ET 13 mins: More direct play by Spain now, El Yamiq gets in the way of his goalkeeper after a long ball, almost a mix up but Morocco escape. A strange pot shot from 45 yards from Rodri goes way wide, maybe a sign of Spain’s frustration.


ET 10 mins: Rodri look to release Fati with a long pass immediately but it’s well defended. Morata gets through but again great defending by Morocco as he saves hit team from the cross. The ball then falls to Balde in the box but his shot is blocked.


ET 8 mins: Williams beat his man but the cross just over Morata’s head. A bit of dynamism for Spain though that is much needed. Fati on for Olmo, Balde for Alba. Two more players with some dynamism.


ET 6 mins: Amrabat plays Cheddira in and it seems he’s through but it’s offside. Very late call there.


ET (extra time) 3 mins: Extra time takes on a similar shape with Spain continuing with their possession game, Morocco’s pressing looking slightly fresher.


After 90 minutes: Morocco 0 Spain 0

Heading for extra time! It looked that way for quite a while. Not much happening for long stretches of that second half. But some chances and nervy moments in the last 10 minutes. A nervy game and the nerves will only continue for both sets of supporters for the next 30 minutes, with an eye on a penalty shootout. Spain’s 70 per cent possession was mostly sterile, Williams added pace and looks most likely to break the deadlock.


95 mins: Last chance for Spain, Olmo has been fouled again by Ounahi. Free kick to Spain, Olmo takes, it goes through everyone... it was going in the corner but Bono saves! Corner free header for Laporte but he misses! Extra time.


93 mins: Oof Spain keeper Simon chased down and almost caught out, that was a close one. El Yamiq goes down shouting and holding his leg, wins a foul. Ziyech plays in but Spain play everyone offside.


91 mins: Foul by Ounahi and a yellow card for a tackle on Olmo. Dangerous area for Spain. Moroccan fans look nervous in the crowd. Five minutes added time. Soler’s free kick goes to the back post, it’s a free header for Morata but he heads it way over.


89 mins: Williams with serious pace again but Saiss sweeps up. Morocco break and Hakimi plays a nice one-two but the pass is overhit by Ounahi. On the other hand Spain counter, Morata and Amrabat with a super block from Williams.


87 mins: Hakimi gets a good overlap, great cross, Ezzalzouli tries to head back but Spain escape. First Morocco chance for a while there.


84 mins: Another chance for Spain created by the youthful Williams, who finds Morata in the box. From a tough angle he blasts wide, was never realistically going to score from there. Morrocan subs include Cheddira, Attiyat Allah, Sabiri. Unfortunately for Morocco, Aguerd is down injured. El Yamiq is on.


81 mins: Chance for Spain, Williams uses his pace, beats his man and puts in a dangerous cross. Olmo can’t get to it before the outstanding Aguerd though.


78 mins: At this point it looks like Morocco are trying to hang on for just one moment to smash and grab. But it’s not like Spain are creating great chances. To show the frustration Olmo takes a wild shot over the bar.


73 mins: Spain keep probing, no change in their style. Morocco struggling to get up the pitch to create good chances though. Nico Williams is coming on to bring some pace to Spain’s attack.


69 mins: Pedri gets through the lines one of the few times in this game and plays in Morata in the box but brilliant tackle by Aguerd. Lots of heroes in red so far.


66 mins: Laporte with a good long pass, nearly finds a Spanish player but Mazraoui clears. Boufal off for Ezzalzouli, surprising that given Boufal had given Llorente the run around in the first half.


63 mins: Alba puts in a good ball but Morocco escape and break with Ziyech and Mazraoui but Spain recover well. Time for substitutions - Gavi and Asensio off for Morata and Carlos Soler.


60 mins: Not a classic this one so far, and it’s lost a bit of the intensity of the first half. Both teams look tense, Spain look like they desperately need subs - Morata or Williams?


57 mins: Boufal with an another good dribble, two Moroccan players slip but Spain refuse to counter and pass the ball back and eventually lose the ball.


54 mins: Gavi is fouled by Hakimi in a dangerous position just outside the box. Spain try to take it quickly but the referee doesn’t allow. Asensio lays off the free kick and Olmo hits a rasping shot that is well punched away from the keeper.


50 mins: Great dribble by Ziyech gets Morocco up the pitch, Simón hits a poor pass under pressing but Spain escape with a foul.


48 mins: Oof clean nutmeg by Torres, Mazraoui hacks him down. Free kick to Spain is well headed away.


HALF-TIME: Morocco 0 Spain 0

A stalemate at half-time but an absorbing game all the same. Morocco sitting back and absorbing the pressure but they have had some of the best chances of the half and are more than competing, with some brilliant skills by Boufal standing out. Spain may need to try something different off the bench to break the deadlock.


44 mins: Poor clearance by Rodri and Hakimi puts in a great cross that is desperately defended. Boufal beats the defender easily but the cross is headed over. Boufal to Mazraoui great interplay again and a cross to the back post. Ziyech heads back but Spain just get the header out and escape. Morocco galvanised.


41 mins: Gavi crosses the ball from the byline, one of the few players to find gaps so far, but well defended. Alba tries to play Olmo in but Hakimi outpaces him and lets the ball go out for a goal kick.


38 mins: Every time Spain doddle on the ball, there’s a second Moroccan man helping out. Great team ethic in this Moroccan team, they’re well drilled.


36 mins: Gavi finds a little gap, plays to Torres but too slow and four surround him. Spain keep the ball though. Laporte plays to Olmo who tries to flick over the defender but Morocco stay strong and Gavi ends up fouling.


34 mins: Rare little bit of possession for Morocco ends with Mazraoui, who takes a powerful shot and Simon has to make a save. Asensio gets in behind again but can’t control the ball and falls to the keeper.


31 mins: Spain got through a few times, with this low block they’ll have to take their chances. Saiss nearly plays En-Nesyri through but good defending by Rodri.


27 mins: A few quickfire chances for Spain! Bono gives the ball to Hakimi but it’s won by Spain... Bono makes up for it with a brilliant save and the follow up is also blocked but it’s offside. First chance of the game for Spain, let off for Morocco. Then a long through ball by Spain, Asensio makes a great run but shoots into the sidenetting.


24 mins: Boufal skins Llorente again, and he dummies to go one way and goes the other. Morocco having a lot luck down that side, magic dribbling. Morocco then win a corner but it leads nowhere.


21 mins: Some strong tackling by Morocco, going for every ball in their own half, happy to stay deep. Some exceptional skill by Boufal, beating two defenders and he plays to the other side of the pitch. Morocco eventually win a free for a foul on Amrabat.


17 mins: Another long spell of Spain possession but no shot to be seen. Morocco standing strong and also dealing with Spain’s press well, with some composed passing.


14 mins: Morocco goalkeeper Bono nearly caught out on the press but great control in his box, Moroccan fans with their hearts in their mouths at that, no doubt. Amrabat starting the game as he had the others, disrupting Spain’s play.


11 mins: Break by Boufal as Morocco win a second ball off Spain and he wins a free-kick in a dangerous area. Hakimi takes it, grood contact and curl but just narrowly goes over the bar.


8 mins: Boufal gets the ball on the wing but can’t get around Busquets and Llorente. Spain still yet to make an opening against the wall of Morocco.


5 mins: Morocco set their stall, just passing along the back around the halfway line. Morocco finally get the ball and counter with Ziyech but he runs it out of play.


2 mins: Early let them know you’re there tackle on Jordi Alba. Morocco have come to battle. Jeering of Spain’s possession early on, it’s like a home game for Morocco.


Time for the national anthems. Tactically it’s hard to see the game going any other way than one way, Spain to dominate possession and Morocco to try to hit them on the break. Amrabat has been strong in defensive midfield for Morocco so far, can he stop Pedri and Gavi creating too many midfield triangles to set up their forwards?


Anticipation building for Morocco, great set of fans they have:

Head to head: Morocco have never beaten Spain but they were only a minute away from doing so in the last World Cup, before Iago Aspas scored in stoppage time. The only other matches between the two were in 1961, when Spain won both games.

Politically, Morocco and Spain have been at odds as recently as last year. Spanish PM Pedro Sanchez and Moroccan King Mohammad VI met in Rabat earlier this year after a year of tense relations. Spain said it backed the kingdom’s plan of limited autonomy under Moroccan sovereignty for Western Sahara.

The diplomatic tensions began a year ago when Madrid allowed Brahim Ghali, leader of the Polisario Front, which seeks independence for the territory of Western Sahara, to be treated for Covid in a Spanish hospital. Morocco has accused Ghali of war crimes and views Western Sahara as an integral part of the kingdom. After Spanish colonial forces withdrew from Morocco in 1975, the country fought a bitter war with the Polisario.


Read our soccer correspondent Gavin Cummiskey’s excellent dive into Morocco before today’s game as a motivated diaspora unites to telling effect for Morocco in World Cup:

The story of the Atlas Lions is the story of immigrants returning home. Not to live, but long enough to gift status to the people they were forced to leave behind, or in many cases never got to meet, after being born to the exiled in Madrid, Paris, Montreal, the Netherlands and Belgium.

“It’s like you play for your grandfather and their grandfathers,” Hakimi, who was born in Madrid, told Vogue. “You play for millions of Moroccans.”

“We are very conscious that we have a lot of eyes on us and that we represent something in the Arab world,” said Abouk, “so we try to do our best.”


Team news:

Spain manager Luis Enrique made a surprise change in his team to face Morocco, starting Marcos Llorente at right back in place of the injured Cezar Azpilicueta.

That was the only switch from Spain’s normal first-choice starting 11, the one Luis Enrique used in the 7-0 win over Costa Rica in their opening group match in Qatar.

Winger Marco Asensio will play as centre forward, with Ferran Torres and Dani Olmo in support.

Morocco strengthened their midfield, bringing in Selim Amallah to replace forward Abdelhamid Sabiri.


Yassine Bounou, Achraf Hakimi, Nayef Aguerd, Romain Saiss (capt.), Noussair Mazraoui, Sofyan Amrabat, Selim Amallah, Azzedine Ounahi, Hakim Ziyech, Soufiane Boufal, Youssef En-Nesyri


Unai Simon, Marcos Llorente, Aymeric Laporte, Rodri, Jordi Alba, Sergio Busquets (capt.), Gavi, Pedri, Ferran Torres, Dani Olmo, Marco Asensio


Hello and welcome to live coverage of the World Cup last 16 clash between Morocco and Spain in Education City Stadium in Qatar. Morocco surprised in the first round of games by topping a group with Belgium and Croatia, going unbeaten and should provide a stern test against Luis Enrique’s Spain. Kickoff is at 3pm.