Morocco is the first Arab or North African nation to qualify for the Women’s World Cup and is now the first to advance beyond the group stage. That’s something none of the other seven tournament newcomers managed to do.

And it all started with a thumping 6-0 loss to Germany. While the Moroccans recovered to win their next two games, Germany lost 2-1 to Colombia and then was held 1-1 by South Korea when it needed a win in Brisbane to avoid elimination.

The last two group games started at the same time on opposite sides of the Australian continent but stoppage time in Brisbane lasted longer.

The win over South Korea last weekend was historic for the team, for Ibtissam Jraïdi scoring Morocco’s first World Cup goal, and for another significant milestone — defender Nouhaila Benzina became the first player to wear a Hijab in a World Cup game at the senior level.

Moroccan soccer fans have had plenty of celebrations with their national teams at the most recent World Cups. The Atlas Lionesses created history just by qualifying, and then just by scoring their first win. Beating Colombia to knock Germany out of the tournament was another level.

Morocco’s men’s team also made World Cup history last year. In the 2022 men’s World Cup, the Atlas Lions advanced to the round of 16 for the first time since 1986 and became the first African or Arab nation to reach a World Cup semifinal.

According to apnews