Morocco and 2018 finalists Croatia aim to get off to a winning start in their Group F clash at the World Cup… but what time is kick-off? What TV channel is it on? What is their head-to-head record? And what is the team news?
- 2018 World Cup finalists Croatia kickstart their Qatar campaign vs Morocco
- Both teams know making a strong start in the opening game is absolutely key
- Sportsmail takes you through how you can watch the match and when it is on
- GROUP F GUIDE: All you need on Belgium, Canada, Croatia and Morocco
A finely-poised Group F gets underway in Al Bayt as a Hakim Ziyech-led Morocco take on 2018 finalists Croatia.
Belgium find themselves favourites to top the group but both of these teams, as well as Canada, will hold real optimism of making it to the knockout stages.
For Croatia and Morocco those ambitions will start outside of Doha with an early kick-off on Wednesday, November 23.
With the clash quickly approaching, Sportsmail takes you through everything you need to know below.
When is Morocco vs Croatia?
The Group F opener is the first match of the day on Wednesday, November 23.
It will kick off at 10am BST.
But if you’re a Morocco or Croatia fan and mind themselves out in the States, set the alarm clock for 5am to catch kick-off.
In Australia, a night-cap game is in store with a 9pm start.
Date: Wednesday, November 23
Time: 10am (UK), 5am (US Eastern) and 9pm (Australian Eastern).
Achraf Hakimi will look to carry on his form for Paris Saint-Germain at the World Cup in Qatar
How to watch the match
If you’re in the UK and not bogged down by the day job, ITV will be showing Morocco vs Croatia, while it will be on STV in Scotland.
Fox Sports 1 will be broadcasting the early-morning match in the US, while SBS have it on in Australia.
SBS will be televising every match during the 2022 World Cup for football fans in Australia.
If you’re unable to watch the game live, you can relive the action via the FIFA YouTube Channel (Worldwide). The official YouTube channel will be posting highlight reels after each game.
UK: ITV1 and STV
US: Fox Sports 1
Australia: SBS and SBS on Demand
Where is Morocco vs Croatia being played?
The Al Bayt Stadium, situated outside of Doha, provides the backdrop for this one.
The 60,000-capacity ground is one of the larger stadiums in operation for the World Cup.
It will stage matches right through to the semi-finals of the competition.
The arena is designed to represent Arab hospitality with the structure looking like a traditional Arab tent known as ‘bayt al sha’ar’.
One of the larger stadiums, the Al Bayt will stage matches right through to the semi-finals
Because temperatures in Qatar can top 30C even in November, it has a retractable roof
Because temperatures in Qatar can top 30C even in November, it will also have a retractable roof to keep out the heat.
It is the furthest stadium from Doha but fans not wanting to leave can stay in its plush five-star hotel and shopping centre, which will be opened in the venue.
Location: Al Khor
Stadium: Al Bayt Stadium
Morocco vs Croatia: Team News
Hakim Ziyech was cast aside by the last management team but he is back involved and is expected to play a crucial role in attack for Morocco.
Ziyech actually RETIRED from international football in February 2022 as he seemed to accept his fate amid a 15-month exile after receiving 40 caps and scoring 17 goals.
But the out-of-favour Chelsea winger made a surprise return during September’s international friendlies and is now raring to go in Qatar.
For Croatia, they will need Tottenham’s Ivan Perisic to give them a lot more in attack than is required from him in north London if they are to have a deep run.
Goalkeepers: Yassine Bono, Munir, Ahmed Reda Tagnaouti
Defenders: Achraf Hakimi, Noussair Mazraoui, Romain Saiss, Nayef Aguerd, Achraf Dari, Jawad El-Yamiq, Yahia Attiat-Allal, Badr Benoun
Midfielders: Sofyan Amrabat, Selim Amallah, Abdelhamid Sabiri, Azzedine Ounahi, Bilel El Khanouss, Yahya Jabrane
Forwards: Hakim Ziyech, Youssef En-Nesyri, Sofiane Boufal, Zakaria Aboukhlal, Ez Abde, Amine Harit, Ilias Chair, Abderrazak Hamdallah, Walid Cheddira
Morocco’s hopes will hinge on the form of Hakim Ziyech, who is back in the national team
Goalkeepers: Dominik Livakovic, Ivica Ivusic, Ivo Grbic.
Defenders: Domagoj Vida, Dejan Lovren, Borna Barisic, Josip Juranovic, Josko Gvardiol, Borna Sosa, Josip Stanisic, Martin Erlic, Josip Sutalo.
Midfielders: Luka Modric, Mateo Kovacic, Marcelo Brozovic, Mario Pasalic, Nikola Vlasic, Lovro Majer, Kristijan Jakic, Luka Sucic.
Forwards: Ivan Perisic, Andrej Kramaric, Bruno Petkovic, Mislav Orsic, Ante Budimir, Marko Livaja.
Head to Head record
These two sides have only met once before and it came in the Hassan II Trophy, a friendly tournament organised by the Royal Moroccan Football Federation that was played in the city of Casablanca.
In front of an estimated crowd of 80,000, Croatia raced into an early lead with two goals in two minutes from Goran Vlaovic after a quarter of an hour.
Morocco rallied with goals from Salaheddine Bassir and Ahmed Bahja but they fell just short in a penalty shoot-out, losing 7-6.
Dec 1996 – Morocco 2-2 Croatia (6-7 pens) (Friendly)
Luka Modric and Co reached the final in 2018 and will again target making a deep run
Group F fixtures
Morocco vs Croatia – Wednesday, November 23 at 10am
Belgium vs Canada – Wednesday, November 23 at 7pm
Belgium vs Morocco – Sunday, November 27 at 1pm
Croatia vs Canada – Sunday, November 27 at 4pm
Croatia vs Belgium – Thursday, December 1 at 3pm
Canada vs Morocco – Thursday, December 1 at 3pm
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