Morocco claimed Group F at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations on Wednesday night with a 1-0 victory over Zambia in San Pedro.
The success allowed Cote d'Ivoire to advance to the last-16 as one of the four best third-placed sides just hours after Ivorian football federation chiefs sacked the national team's head coach Jean-Louis Gasset for what they called insufficient results in accordance to the contract of objectives they had with
The reprieve could be short lived. Cote d'Ivoire under Gasset's replacement Emerse Faé will take on the defending champions Senegal on 29 January in Yamoussoukro.
Morocco, who came into the 2023 competition as one of the favoruites, will face South Africa on 30 January in San Pedro.
Under threat of losing top spot to Democratic Repubic of Congo, Morocco started their final pool game at the Stade Lauent Pokou with intent.
They dominated the outset and their early pressure was rewarded when skipper Hakim Ziyech thrashed in past the Zambia goalkeeper Tresford Lawrence Mulenga eight minutes before the pause.
That gave the Zambians 45 minutes to level and reclaim at least third place.
But though willing, Avram Grant's men were limited.
The Moroccans kept their composure as Zambia harried for an equaliser and held on.
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