World Cup: France Defeats Morocco, Reaches Final

    World Cup: France Defeats Morocco, Reaches Final
    Last updated Dec 15, 2022
    Image credit: FIFA


    • Defending football world champion France defeated Morocco 2-0 on Wednesday to reach the 2022 FIFA World Cup final, which will be played on Sunday against Argentina. Morocco will face Croatia in the third-place match on Saturday.[1]
    • Clashes broke out between French and Moroccan fans across France and Belgium shortly after the final whistle, with riot police using water cannons and tear gas to disperse the crowds. In Montpellier, a boy was reportedly run over by a vehicle and later died in hospital.[2]
    • The face-off between France's Les Bleus and Morocco's Atlas Lions had been highly anticipated since Saturday, when both countries advanced to the semifinals, due to historic colonial ties as well as current immigration waves between the nations.[3]
    • Some 10K French police officers were mobilized nationwide ahead of Wednesday's match — 5K in the Île-de-France region around Paris and about 2.2K in the capital. The move reportedly meant twice the amount of security staff were deployed in comparison to previous World Cup matches, with the aim of ensuring "good security conditions."[4]
    • Clashes also erupted on Saturday between riot police and Moroccan supporters following Morocco's stunning victory against Portugal in the quarter finals —100 people were arrested after shops were damaged and cars set alight.[5]
    • More than six decades after the end of French colonial rule over the North African country, France remains Morocco's main foreign investor and trading partner, and at least 780K people of Moroccan origin reportedly live in France.[6]


    Narrative A

    Morocco's unexpected success in the 2022 World Cup was powerfully symbolic, prompting a wave of Arab pride and solidarity around the world. But, by facing down a former imperial power in this match, the semi-final game also platformed the complexities of French-Moroccan fluid national identities and the developments made by Morocco since it gained independence.

    Narrative B

    This game was a win-win situation on the pitch for many French-Moroccan football supporters. Off the pitch, however, this demonstration of dual-national pride has stoked conflict and fired up the right-wing, by leading indigenous French nationalists to claim that Muslim immigrants are not loyal to France and are even part of the so-called "great replacement." The game did not promote unity but division.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 49% chance that France will win the 2022 FIFA World Cup, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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