Five times they have bid, and five times they have been overlooked – Morocco are perhaps destined to never host a World Cup.

Morocco’s bid faced unwanted attention when Fifa secretary general Fatma Samoura was the subject of an investigation into an alleged conflict of interest.

Members of Fifa’s World Cup bid evaluation task force said she had an undeclared family link with Morocco 2026 bid ambassador El Hadji Diouf.

She was cleared of any wrongdoing and dismissed the claims as “laughable” and “unfortunate”.

The same evaluation task force later expressed concerns over stadiums, the availability of accommodation, and the travel network, despite ratifying their proposals.

Nine of the 14 stadiums included in Morocco’s bid were yet to be built, while the remaining five required “significant renovation or upgrading”.

But bid chief Hicham el Amrani said he was confident the country’s infrastructure “could deliver” and made play of the North African nation’s position, nine miles from the southern tip of Spain – dubbing it a “European” World Cup.

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