Morocco’s historic win over Spain saw Zaid el Morabiti up close. The futsal legend from Amsterdam is at the World Cup in Qatar and was amazed. “I already got goosebumps at the national anthem in the stadium and afterwards the atmosphere was really abnormal. I’ve never experienced anything like this.”
“It’s great how the fans of Morocco are celebrating here in Doha,” Zaid el Morabiti told NH Sport on the phone. The coach of the Amsterdam futsal club Lebo is in the Arab country for a week for the World Cup and to provide futsal clinics. “There are really Moroccans here from all over the world. I think about three hundred thousand Moroccans. And everyone is enjoying this wonderful result, a really great atmosphere. We are proud of Morocco.”
Ake and Berghuis
In addition to the Morocco – Spain match, the 38-year-old from Amsterdam also visited the training of the Dutch national team. “I know the physiotherapist of Orange, Ricardo de Sanders, very well. He is also my assistant at Lebo. After training I spoke with players such as Nathan Aké and Steven Berghuis. I know Berghuis from the futsal world. He did used to participate in tournaments.”
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During training, El Morabiti watched national coach Louis van Gaal with extra interest. Both trainers have the same employer. In addition to Lebo, El Morabiti is also employed by the KNVB. He is assistant coach of the Dutch futsal team. “I am very fond of Van Gaal. He is doing fantastic as a trainer and manager. I only hear positive stories from players and trainers about him. I hope to have a coffee with him at the KNVB and to have some thoughts. to switch.”
Football and politics
“I think you should keep sport and politics separate,” is the opinion of El Morabiti when it comes to the controversial World Cup that takes place in Qatar. The indoor soccer coach has been coming to the rich oil state for ten years because of his ‘indoor soccer knowledge’. “In every country there are good things and not so good things happening.”
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El Morabiti is also in the stadium for Friday’s match against Argentina. “I expect the Netherlands to win. The Orange is getting better and better and Memphis Depay also seems to be finding its way. And how great would it be if the final is between the Netherlands and Morocco.”
“I don’t look at nationalities, but at individuals”
Celebration and unrest
After Morocco’s qualification for the quarterfinals, the party started. Not only in Doha and Morocco, but also in Amsterdam. Unfortunately, a number of Morocco fans spoiled it for a large part. The police had to intervene and made the necessary arrests. Of course, El Morabiti also received this from Qatar. “Compare it with club football. There you have hooligans who also ruin it for the rest. I therefore do not look at nationalities, but at individuals.”
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Emphasis on positivity
“I prefer to look at the positive situations,” El Morabiti continues his argument. “The fans here in Doha or in Morocco are setting a good example. They show how you should party with respect for each other. And I think you should put more emphasis on the positive examples, because that will reduce the turmoil .”
With El Morabiti in the stands, the Netherlands will face Argentina on Friday at 8 p.m. and Morocco will face Portugal for the quarterfinals a day later on Saturday.
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