Morocco booked their place into the last 16 of the Africa Cup of Nations as Group F winners, as a Hakim Ziyech’s goal was enough to see out a 1-0 win over Zambia.
The Chelsea midfielder, currently on loan at Turkish club Galatasary, scored the game’s only goal when an Achraf Hakimi’s cross meant for En-Neysri was parried away by Zambian keeper Lawrence Mulenga with Ziyech on sight to smash the loose ball home.
The result enables hosts Ivory Coasts to limp into the knockout phase of the competition and despite being humbled 4-0 by Equatorial Guinea on Monday, the Ivorians boast a better third-placed best record over Zambia.
They were among four highest ranked third-placed best teams including; Guinea [best third-placed], Namibia [second-best third-placed], Mauritania [third-best third-placed].
The Atlas Lions had to contest the match without Coach Walid Regragui who had been banned from the dug-out for two matches after a post-match altercation with DR Congo captain Chancel Mbemba on Sunday.
This wouldn’t faze the number-one ranked team in Africa, as they proceeded from the group with 7 points after two wins and one draw.
They now set their sights on South Africa in the round of 16, while runners-up DR Congo who drew 0-0 with Tanzania will face the Pharaohs of Egypt.