Following their brilliant campaign at the 2018 African Nations Championship, many locals are calling for the inclusion of Morocco home-based players in the main national team which qualified for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Russia.
However, the Atlas Lions coach Herve Renard, who attended almost all the games played by Morocco at the CHAN, has a different idea.
“I have very tough criteria when it comes to inviting players. Individual performance at club level is one of them,” the Frenchman said in Casablanca on Wednesday.
“And then, the level of the league in which the player plies his trade. For example, I would go for a guy who plays in the Italian Serie A over someone playing in the Moroccan league.
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“A player’s state of mind is also very important to me. To be skilful on the pitch is not enough. The player needs to have the mindset of a team player in order to be considered for a call up if not I’m not interested,” he said.
Morocco defeated Nigeria 4-0 in the final to win their first CHAN title, with RS Berkane’s forward / winger Ayoub El Kaabi finishing as the tournament’s best player and top scorer with nine goals.
Renard, however, promised to invite a number of local players for upcoming friendlies.