|Casemiro celebrates after scoring Brazil's opening goal in their World Cup group match against Brazil on 28 November in Qatar. (Andre Penner/Image)|
Fefum.com, - The FIFA World Cup will be held in the Middle East for the first time, with fall tournaments focused on the pinnacle of football.
The US Men's National Team ended its World Cup run with a 3-1 loss to the Netherlands on Saturday. After playing draws with Wales and England, the US defeated Iran 1-0 on Tuesday to advance to the Round of 16 before losing to the Netherlands.
Heavy hit by injuries and problems within the federation, Mexico was ruled out of the World Cup on Wednesday despite a 2-1 victory over Saudi Arabia in the final group-play match.
Morocco vs Spain
|Morocco's Romain Saiss will clear the ball in front of Canada's Tajon Buchanan in Thursday's group match. (Manu Fernandez/Image)|
Where: Education City Stadium
Time: Tuesday at 7am
TV: Fox, Telemundo, Peacock Premium
Buzz: Morocco and Spain occupy different continents but are only 8 miles apart. But the football history of both countries does not end there.
Morocco has qualified for the round of 16 for the second time since 1986, but former World Cup champions Spain has missed the knockout round only once this century. However, undefeated Morocco was arguably the better team in this tournament, winning a group that included second-placed Belgium and Croatia with a stifling defense that allowed only own goals in group play.
Offensively, the Moroccan was incredibly efficient, scoring 4 goals from 4 players on 21 shots. Only four teams finished group plays with fewer shots.
Alvaro Morata has only scored two goals since Spain, who lost to Japan in the group-play final and finished second, beat Costa Rica 7-0 in their opening match. Morata finished the group play tied for first place in the tournament with three goals.
Spain's performance against Costa Rica helped them make 2,384 passes, the most at the World Cup in the group stage. This marks a return to the short passing, possession-based play perfected by the team in their 2010 title win. Spain also scored nine goals to draw England in group play.