CAIRO-25 December 2021: Morocco announced their final squad for the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), to be held in Cameroon next January, with Barcelona’s youngster, Abdessamad Ezzalzouli, headlining the list.
Ezzalzouli has been a key player in Barcelona after being promoted to the first team this summer and he attracted the attention of the Moroccan officials, who decided to include him in their list for the continental competition.
However, the Spanish officials are putting pressure on the youngster to play down the Moroccan offer, urging him to wait for a call from the Spanish first team.
The player is eligible for both nations as he was born in Morocco and he has been living in Spain since he was seven.
According to multiple sources, the player wants to wear the jersey of the Lions of Atlas, with the support of his family amid the high hopes the Moroccan officials have for him and the promises of Morocco national team coach Vahid Halilhodžić for the player to be a key ingredient in the squad.
The player also considers what happened to Munir El Haddadi, who was also named in the Moroccan squad for AFCON, when he chose Spain over Morocco in 2016, earning just a single cap for the senior Spanish national team.
El Haddadi had to battle with FIFA to convince them to switch allegiances and represent Morocco. He has to wait for four years until FIFA changed its rules, giving him the chance to play international football again.