Benin achieved a historic qualification from the group stage of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON2019) this week and will now face Morocco in the Round of 16 at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo on Friday.
The Atlas Lions, led by two-time AFCON winner Hervé Renard, are widely tipped to win the clash due to their current form and pedigree in the tournament. However, Benin’s top scorer of two goals, Mickael Poté, believes his side could pull off a shock and prolong the fairytale.
“You have heard all what is being said about the match. We all agree that Morocco go favourite but we have our plan,” Poté told www.aclsports.com on Thursday.
“We won’t allow them to come in easily and crush us and run away with all three points. It’s going to be a battle and we are ready and can’t even wait to get it started.
“They’ve got pace, know how to use the flanks and can hold the ball in midfield. All that we know and have been prepared for, but don’t forget we have our strength too. We have stamina and our defence is good. Not many teams can hold Ghana and Cameroon to a draw.”
The 34-year-old striker, who plies his trade at Adana Demirspor in Turkey, scored Benin’s two goals against the Black Stars in their Group F’s second match. He hopes to repeat that feat against the North Africans.
“I believe I will score against Morocco. I think of it since the day we were drawn against them. It is going to be a difficult match. We are hoping to create some surprise because we have lesser pressure our shoulders compared to Morocco,” he said.
Morocco have won the AFCON once, in 1976, and have finished fourth two times since then.