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Morrocco eye Togo’s scalp in Oyem

Morocco will be keen to record their first 2017 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Group C win when they take on Togo at the Stade d’Oyem in the Gabonese city of Oyem on Friday.

The Lions of the Atlas are coming off a 1-0 defeat to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in their first group game which was played on Monday night.

The defeat left the 1976 African champions Morocco placed fourth on the Group C log without a single point. They are only a point behind third-placed Togo with two more games left.

Youssef El Arabi is likely to start for the Lions of Atlas against Togo. The prolific Moroccan striker was only introduced in the 79th minute on Monday.

Meanwhile, Togo will be out to stun Morocco and register their first Group C victory when the two sides lock horns on Friday.

The Sparrow Hawks played to goalless draw with Ivory Coast in their first group match which was also played in Oyem on Monday evening.

As a result Togo, who have never won the AFCON title, are placed third on the Group C standings with one point – two behind the leaders DR Congo.

Togo coach Claude Le Roy is expected to look to his solid defence which includes the experienced Alaixys Romao and lanky centre back Sadate Ouro-Akoriko.

Claude LeRoy (centre) gets his point across in a Togo training sessionClaude LeRoy (centre) gets his point across in a Togo training session

Key Players

Mbark Boussoufa – Morocco

The experienced midfielder walked away with the man of the match accolade against DR Congo following his impressive display upfront for the Lions of the Atlas in their first Group C game. The 32-year-old winger, who has been playing for Morocco since 2006, will be hoping to inspire his country to victory over the Sparrow Hawks.

Lalawele Atakora – Togo

The attack-minded midfielder was one of the Sparrow Hawks’ star players as they drew with Ivory Coast and he deservedly scooped the man of the match award after their first Group C game. The 26-year-old attacker will be keen to produce another impressive performance and help Togo beat the Lions of the Atlas.

Head-to-head – Morocco v Togo

Morocco FIFA ranking: 57
Togo FIFA ranking: 90
Matches played: 10
Morocco Wins: 4
Togo Wins: 3
Draws: 3
Morocco goals scored: 18
Togo goals scored: 9
Last match: 15 November 2016 in Marrakech – Morocco 2-1 Togo

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