Qatar World Cup 2022 Day 4: Morocco take point from Croatia, Japan nabs win from Germany

Qatar World Cup 2022 Day 4: Morocco take point from Croatia, Japan nabs win from Germany
Morocco held Croatia, who are strong contenders to make the later stages of the tournament, to a 0-0 draw at the Al Bayt Stadium.
6 min read
23 November, 2022

Morocco held Croatia to a 0-0 draw on day four of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Though able to press and expose weakness in Croatia, who made the final at the 2018 World Cup, Morocco were unable to break the deadlock at the Al Bayt Stadium.

Morocco were the last of the four Arab teams to play their first match at the tournament.

Yesterday saw Arab jubilation as Saudi Arabia beat Argentina 2-1, while Tunisia held Denmark to a 0-0 draw.

In the opening game of the tournament, Qatar were beaten 2-0 by Ecuador.

Elsewhere, Japan scored an upset, beating four-time champions Germany 2-1 in the Group E opener at the Khalifa International Stadium. Spain thrashed Costa Rica 7-0 in the other Group E match.

In Group F, Belgium beat Canada 1-0. The North American side missed a penalty in the first half.

9:11 PM
The New Arab Staff

That concludes The New Arab's live coverage of the Qatar 2022 World Cup for today.

Follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram for the latest news and developments on the tournament.

8:56 PM
The New Arab Staff

Full-time: Belgium 1-0 Canada

Belgium beat Canada 1-0 after a goalless second half.

The win puts the European team at the top of Group F with three points.

The Red Devils are in front of Croatia and Morocco, who have one point each after drawing in their match earlier today.

Belgium are victorious over Canada [Alex Livesey - Danehouse/Getty]
7:52 PM
The New Arab Staff

Half-time: Belgium 1-0 Canada

Belgium will start the second half ahead with the scoreline reading 1-0.

The Red Devils' late goal will be particularly frustrating for Canada after midfielder Alphonso Davies missed a penalty 10 minutes into the match.

Still, the North American side can take hope after playing well during the first 45 minutes of the game.

7:46 PM
The New Arab Staff

Belgium 1-0 Canada

Belgium net a goal in the 44th minute of the first half thanks to striker Michy Batshuayi.

The Europeans have five minutes of stoppage time to navigate without conceding if they want to go into the break ahead.

Belgium go 1-0 ahead in their World Cup match against Canada [JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty]
6:00 PM
The New Arab Staff

Full-time: Costa Rica 0-7 Spain 

The World Cup has had lots of upsets so far, but not in this game. Spain were in sparkling form all match, and the scoreline reflects that.

Spain celebrate their victory over Costa Rica [Buda Mendes/Getty]
5:54 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-7 Spain 

A seventh goal just seconds later. Alvaro Morata is the goalscorer this time.

5:51 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-6 Spain 

With one minute left on the clock, Barragan Carlos Soler slots home Spain’s sixth goal of the match.

5:39 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-5 Spain 

74 minutes in, Pablo Martin Gavi makes it five for Spain.

5:28 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-4 Spain

Ferran Torres gets his second of the match in the 54th minute.


4:55 PM
The New Arab Staff

Half-time: Costa Rica 0-3 Spain 

The Spaniards look supremely confident at the halfway mark - pretty much as expected.

4:31 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-3 Spain

Ferran Torres nets a penalty for Spain to give them a comfortable lead just 31 minutes into the match.

4:25 PM
The New Arab Staff

Yemen's Houthis U-turn after congratulating rival Saudi Arabia for win over Argentina

Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels congratulated arch-rival Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for their football team's 2-1 World Cup win over Argentina - before U-turning on the well-wishes.

Houthi information minister Daifallah Al-Shami had tweeted: "One thousand congratulations, the #Saudi_team won over the #Argentinian_team, this win placed Arab football back on the map,"

He soon deleted the tweet and issued an apology to supporters of the Yemeni rebel group.

More on this story here.

4:22 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-2 Spain

Marco Asnensio doubles Spain's lead in the 21st minute.

Marco Asnensio celebrates scoring Spain's second goal of the match [AFP via Getty]
4:12 PM
The New Arab Staff

Costa Rica 0-1 Spain

Dani Olmo scores 11 minutes into the match after a beautiful Spanish passing sequence.

3:55 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Saudi defender to undergo surgery after collision during Argentina win 

After Saudi Arabia's stunning win against Argentina, defender Yasser Al-Shahrani is set to have surgery following a "strong clash in the head, chest and abdomen" during the match.

Shahrani collided with Saudi goalkeeper Mohammed Al-Owais during stoppage time of the second half during the match against Argentina, which ended in an upset 2-1 victory for the Green Falcons.

More on this story here.

3:03 PM
The New Arab Staff

Full-time: Germany 1-2 Japan

After Saudi Arabia’s win yesterday, another big upset as Japan beat four-time World Cup champions Germany with a surging second-half performance.

Ritsu Doan scored Japan's first goal [AFP via Getty]
2:46 PM
The New Arab Staff

Germany 1-2 Japan

Substitute Takuma Asano doubles Japan's lead with only a few minutes of the match remaining.

2:38 PM
The New Arab Staff

Germany 1-1 Japan

It’s one apiece as Ritsu Doan scores for Japan at 75 minutes.

1:53 PM
The New Arab Staff

Half-time: Germany 1-0 Japan

Germany aren't looking their best but they have taken a one-goal lead thanks to a penalty netted by Ilkay Gundogan.

A 47th-minute goal by Kai Havertz that would have doubled Germany's lead was ruled out for offside.

In a pre-kickoff photo, the German team placed their hands over their mouths in an apparent act of protest over FIFA’s ban on One Love armbands.

Germany appeared to protest FIFA's One Love armband ban [Getty]
1:34 PM
The New Arab Staff

Germany 1-0 Japan

Ilkay Gundogan nets a penalty to give Germany the lead 33 minutes into the match at the Khalifa International Stadium.

12:15 PM
The New Arab Staff

'Capable of more': Moroccans react to team's 0-0 draw

Moroccans who tuned into their team’s World Cup match against Croatia have told The New Arab they want more from the squad, after a 0-0 draw.

Watching the match at a cafe in Rabat, 56-year-old Abdelhay said Morocco "can do better".

"They are making a good effort but we need to level up if we want to make it to the next stage. I know they are capable of more," he said.

Many students and teachers in Morocco were able to watch the match guilt-free after some universities cancelled classes for the occasion.

But some were left feeling dejected by their team’s performance.

"I am a bit pessimistic. I don't think we can make it forward in this tournament from this boring and basic match we played today," Hasnae, a 20-year-old student, told The New Arab.

Morocco’s next match is on Sunday, against Belgium.

11:58 AM
The New Arab Staff

Full time: Croatia 0-0 Morocco

Though Morocco pressed at points in the second half, they were unable to break the deadlock. The match ends 0-0 at the Al Bayt Stadium.

[AFP via Getty]
10:50 AM
The New Arab Staff

Half-time: Croatia 0-0 Morocco 

A goalless first half at the Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor.

Morocco appeared the more likely to score, but the Croatians, who made the World Cup final in 2018, began to up the pressure towards the end of the half. 

9:45 AM
The New Arab Staff

While we wait for Croatia v Morocco kick-off, check out how Moroccan fans in Qatar were drumming up excitement before the tournament had even begun:


A post shared by The New Arab (@thenewarab)


9:15 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Saudi win over Argentina inspires Morocco on eve of Croatia clash

Morocco are fired up by Saudi Arabia's stunning upset of World Cup favourites Argentina, their coach Walid Regragui has said.

Though Morocco are 10 places below 2018 World Cup runners-up Croatia in the world rankings, Regragui said his team were inspired by the way the Saudis had outplayed Argentina.

"What is the reality of football as we know it?" Regragui told a pre-match news conference.

"This shakes things up on the international stage because football actually belongs to everyone," Regragui added.

Morocco captain Romain Saiss said the Saudi win proved once again that anything was possible in football.

"When you see the result (Saudi Arabia) were able to have against one of the favourites it gets your creative juices flowing," he added.

"It whets our appetite."


Walid Regragui said the Saudi win over Argentina 'shakes things up' [FIFA via Getty]