Morocco women edge closer to Olympic Games with away win in Zambia

Morocco women edge closer to Olympic Games with away win in Zambia
Moroccan women's national team edged closer to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games following their dramatic 2-1 first-leg triumph against hosts Zambia in Ndola on Friday.
The Atlas Lionesses secured the important away victory in the dying embers of the game with striker Rosella Ayane grabbing the winner in the 95th minute.
This triumph places the Atlas Lionesses in a commanding position as they brace for the return leg scheduled on home soil next Tuesday.
Under the astute guidance of coach Jorge Vilda, the Moroccan squad displayed exceptional resilience and skill to outmaneuver their Zambian counterparts led by Bruce Mwape.
Despite facing early pressure, they withstood a penalty scare in the 33rd minute, brilliantly thwarted by Moroccan goalkeeper Khadija Rmichi, denying Prisca Chilufya's attempt.
However, just before halftime, Morocco seized the initiative with a breathtaking goal by Zineb Redouani in the 45th minute from 30 yards plus, leaving Zambian goalkeeper Eunice Sakala helpless.
Upon resumption, the Moroccans faced relentless pressure from Zambia, eventually conceding an equalizer from Lushomo Mweemba in the 80th minute.
Yet, with the match seemingly destined for a stalemate, Ayane emerged as the hero, securing victory for Morocco in the dying moments of game.
As Jorge Vilda's squad prepares to return home, they will be seeking to replicate the form on Tuesday when they host Zambia in the return leg.