Continuing their fairytale run in the FIFA World Cup 2022, Morocco secured a historic victory over Spain in the penalty shootout. Neither of the two teams could be separated in normal time or extra time, with the game remaining goalless. Into the penalty shootout, Morocco goalkeeper Yassine Bounou made three saves to help his team secure a 3-0 win. While Bounou did a perfect job as the goalkeeper, Morocco right-back Achraf Hakimi sealed his team’s progression with a ‘panenka’, the video of which has gone viral on social media.
Scoring a penalty is a game of confidence. Whichever player shows more confidence in those moments, goes on to win the battle. But, to score a panenka at that moment, is even more difficult. Hakimi, with the hopes of the entire Morocco on his shoulders, did so to take his team into the quarter-finals of the FIFA World Cup for the first time in history.
The ice-cool veins Hakimi showed to score that panenka has seen him earn plenty of praise on social media. Several angles of the video have been extensively shared by fans on the internet. Here are a few:
Achraf Hakimi, panenka to win the game! Incredible Hakimi, incredible Morocco, incredible atmosphere!! pic.twitter.com/PjtUVOkVgs
— Julien Laurens (@LaurensJulien) December 6, 2022
Hakimi with a Panenka Penalty to send Morocco through to the Quarter-Finals of The World Cup for the First Time! pic.twitter.com/ugQE7CfyUr
— My Greatest 11 (@MyGreatest11) December 6, 2022
Spain coach Luis Enrique had claimed his players prepared by taking 1,000 penalties as homework but Pablo Sarabia, Carlos Soler and Sergio Busquets all missed from the spot and Madrid-born Hakimi dinked his home to the delight of Morocco’s raucous support.
Despite heavy pressure by Spain in the final moments before penalties, they could not trouble the Sevilla goalkeeper again, with Pablo Sarabia clipping the outside of the post, although he might have been offside.
Having been sent on apparently for the shoot-out, Sarabia struck the post again from Spain’s first penalty, after Abdelhamid Sabiri had sent Morocco ahead.
Soler and Busquets missed, while Hakim Ziyech scored, before Hakimi netted against his birth country to ignite wild celebrations.
With AFP inputs
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