'A gift to all of Morocco' - Bono celebrates World Cup win against Spain

[08-12-2022 12:39 PM]

Ammon News - Morocco goalkeeper Bono described his side’s historic World Cup victory against Spain as a “gift to all of Morocco”.

The North Africans, competing in the tournament’s knockouts for the first time in 36 years, defeated the 2010 champions on penalties at Education City Stadium on Tuesday after the match had finished goalless.

The win ensured Morocco became the first Arab team to reach the World Cup quarter-finals.

Yassine Bounou, known as Bono, would prove the hero for his national team, the Sevilla goalkeeper saving two of Spain's three penalties in the shoot-out to leave Paris Saint-Germain full-back Achraf Hakimi to seal a famous victory.

Referencing the vocal and partisan backing Morocco had in the stands, as well as back home, Bono said: "We felt the support of our fans in Morocco and elsewhere, and that gave us momentum in the stadium.

"On behalf of all the players, I want to thank the fans who helped us in this task. I congratulate all the players and I offer this gift to all the Moroccan people."

In the shoot-out, after Pablo Sarabia struck the post, Bono saved from Carlos Soler and Sergio Busquets to consign Spain to their second successive exit on penalties from the World Cup.

"You know penalties, it's a little bit of intuition, a little bit of luck," Bono told beIN Sports. "We won, that's the most important thing. Hats off to the whole team – they did the job. It was incredible.

"It's not easy to stay focused for 120 minutes, against a Spanish team that dominates the ball well, who has possession.

"When you live moments like this, sometimes it's hard to realise it. We will try to avoid the noise around us, stay focused on ourselves, on our job, our recovery."

Morocco, who also became the fourth African side to advance to the last 16, will face Portugal in the quarter-finals.

"I'm so happy for the team ... they did a great job all through the game," Bono said. "We understood the game from the start, so I'm so happy for this win."

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