Friday, December 2, 2022

Hakim Ziyech: from banned to hero, why is the Moroccan back in selection?

Will Hakim Ziyech be one of the stars of the World Cup? One thing is certain, he has once again become the attraction of the Moroccan selection for this World Cup. Banned from the national team under the reign of Vahid Halilhodzic, the Chelsea player will finally try to respond on the ground.

Relations between the two men had reached a point of no return in August 2021 when the former coach had excluded the Chelsea striker from the selection, justifying his decision by “disciplinary problems”. The player’s reaction had been quick since he announced his international retirement the next day, denouncing the “lies” of the technician.

An expected return to selection

Recalled by the new coach Walid Regragui, the player is “protected”. Hakim is like a wild horse, if you try to tame him, to show that you’re the master, that’s the biggest mistake you can make, he won’t give you anything. You have to let him roam, with rules that suit him and suit the group.” Last August, when the new coach came to take the place of “coach Vahid”, Ziyech’s position was still clear, he does not want to return. Long work and many conversations finally convinced the former Ajax player: “It was not so easy to get him back. He had been disappointed, touched, because he really loves Morocco, and he had decided something in his head. I come from Corbeil-Essonnes, I’m a guy from a working-class neighborhood, like him, a city in Amsterdam is for me like a city in Paris or Madrid, and you know, we’re proud, obsessed… I exchanged a lot with him on the phone, I traveled. Now, I feel happy, and we saw it against Georgia (3-0 victory) last Thursday), he becomes the player he is, and I want to make him one of my relays in the group.

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