Fez is the second largest city in Morocco and the northern inland part of the country has the Fez Stadium which is a potential host arena for the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations.
It is in this arena that a goal-scorer that qualified an African team into the semi-final of the World Cup is honoured.
Youssel En-Nesyri who leapt an incredible height of 2.78 metres to score Morocco’s winner against Portugal at the last World Cup has a huge photograph that captured the goal episode, adorning the Fez Stadium.
The stadium which seats are in green and red depicting the national colours of Morocco, is one of the arenas the country has tabled in the bid to host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations.
En-Nesyri’s incredible jump cum goal set an eye-catching record as it reportedly outperformed Ronaldo’s famous 2.56-metre jump during a game with his former club Juventus in the 2019-2020 football season.
Both El-Nesyri and Ronaldo are of the same height. El-Nesyri is a native of the city of Fez. His astounding jump above Portugal’s goalkeeper Diogo Costa and defender, Ruben Dias culminating in a header into the net was described as highest jump in football goal scoring episodes.
His native Fez in Morocco has honoured him. According to Anass Erghnouni, the director of the Fez stadium, El-Nesyri started his football career as a youth player at Maghreb Association Sportve de Fes (MAS Fes) before moving to Mohammed VI Football Academy in Rabat.
En-Nesyri later joined Malaga CF in Spain. The home boy is not the only player hounored at the Fez Stadium. A huge emotion-laden photograph of Achraf Hakim kissing the forehead of his mother adorns the opening room of magnificent Fez Stadium.
More significant is perhaps the life-sized photograph that King Mohammed VI took with the Atlas Lions upon return from Qatar 2022 World Cup.
The use of photographs that capture Morocco’s passion for football may not be a surprise. Erghnouni, the director of the stadium and top official at Morocco’s stadium management company, SONARGES explained that Fez is one of the biggest cultural centres of Morocco and habouring over 12 centuries of history.
The simplicity of the stadium’s design is to showcase the city’s old century of culture, explained Erghnouni. The pitch of the stadium has lush green natural grass.
The resident clubs at the 45,000 capacity stadium are Maghreb Association Sportive de Fès (MAS Fes) and Wydad Athletic de Fès.
Though in existence since1997, it was officially commissioned 10 years later.
It habours four locker rooms for football teams, making it very good for double-header matches for which Africa Cup of Nations’ group games adopted.
It means that while a game is on, the two other teams who are to take on the pitch later have their own locker rooms.
Four huge slanting flood light pillars each carry 50 halogen lamps to ensure brilliant spectacle both for spectators and television viewers.