Once again, Morocco has captured the attention of the global football community as two of its star players, Yassine Bounou and Achraf Hakimi, grace the cover of the February issue of GQ Middle East. This latest edition of the magazine delves into the unexpected success of Morocco’s historic run in the 2022 World Cup, shining a spotlight on the significance of this achievement for audiences around the world, including Arabs, Africans, and Muslims.
Yassine Bounou, the remarkable goalkeeper for Sevilla FC, made waves in the 2022 World Cup with his standout performance and has since garnered worldwide recognition. He was a finalist for the Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper of 2022, competing against Thibaut Courtois of Belgium and Emiliano Martinez of Argentina. Furthermore, Bounou made history by becoming the first African goalkeeper to be ranked in the top three of the International Federation of Football History and Statistics’ list of top ten goalkeepers for 2022. Bounou’s exceptional talent has been acknowledged by The Guardian, which ranked him as the 43rd-best footballer in the world.
Meanwhile, Achraf Hakimi, the world-class defender for Paris Saint-Germain, has also been making a splash in the football world. He was listed by The Guardian as the 16th-best footballer in the world, rising a staggering 22 places compared to his ranking in 2021. This is not the first time Hakimi has been in the public eye, as he and his wife, Spanish-Tunisian actress Hiba Abouk, graced the cover of Vogue Arabia’s October 2022 issue.
Bounou and Hakimi both take great pride in representing their country on the global stage and are driven to continue achieving great things in the future. Bounou expressed that the recognition of Morocco and its flag on a global level is a tremendous honor, and he is grateful for the team’s accomplishments.
The GQ Middle East cover serves as a testament to the talent and hard work of these two players and the entire Moroccan football team. It highlights the impact that the team’s success has had on the world and the pride it has brought to Morocco and its people. As Morocco continues to make strides in the world of football, it is evident that its players will continue to shine on the global stage.