Morocco’s unlikely success at the Fifa World Cup shows that it’s personal for Muslims

There is very little that causes Muslim unity. Perhaps there are just two things that do: Pork and Palestine. Is there anything else all Muslims hate and support, respectively? 

But there is a new phenomenon which has emerged in the past few weeks during the World Cup…

The absolute joy around Morocco’s surprise success story. 

Yes, the prostrations after the wins and recitation of the Quran before games is heart-warming. Praising Allah in interviews makes us feel proud. And the players showing such love and respect for their mothers makes us feel all warm and fuzzy inside. 

But there seems to be something even deeper than it just being a Muslim country doing well in the world’s biggest football tournament. 

[The Moroccan Player’s ‘prostration of gratitude’ | Image Credit: Twitter/brfootball]

The sheer level of happiness, shown by the viral posts on Morocco’s players as Muslims are sharing them like crazy, evidences a new burst of energy, almost reinvigorating the Muslim collective spirit and renewing a sense of pride. 

Many Muslims, for decades – or centuries – have felt inferior, weak, and disenfranchised. 

Some of it can be explained by Islamophobia and even by the remnants of colonialism. Some of it by the removal of faith in everyday life which has meant all sorts of alternative lifestyles, movements, and behaviours that have left Muslims at the fringes of society. 

Many Muslims feel like the world is against them. 

There’s no surprise, then, that this feels personal, raw, and emotional. Especially since Muslim players are now center stage proudly showcasing their religion in the most highly anticipated event spectated by millions around the world.

[Screenshots via Twitter]

Muslims long to feel like a proud ummah again. They need a confidence boost. They want a victory of some sort, even if it’s in sports. It doesn’t matter. Muslims needed this. 

Morocco take on the reigning champions France this week. Will they continue their winning streak? For the sake of the Ummah, let’s hope so. 

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