Hakimi uploaded an Instagram picture of himself giving his mother a kiss on the forehead along with the caption, "I love you, Mom."
While it is common practice for players' wives and girlfriends to be in the stands for soccer matches, very rarely are the players' parents spotted in the crowds. That is certainly not the case with the Moroccan soccer team at the World Cup in Qatar. The team appears to be drawing strength from the support of their parents and the fans in their amazing run in the world cup. Paris Saint-Germain fullback Achraf Hakimi immediately headed for his mother in the stadium after Morocco stunned the footballing world by overcoming pre-tournament favorites Belgium 2-0 in a Group F match. The 24-year-old player had a famous World Cup moment when he kissed his mother following the 2-0 victory over Belgium. It was a sight that followed when Morocco beat favorites Spain to progress to the quarter-finals. Hakimi had just scored the winning penalty and shared an adorable moment with his mother. It wasn't just him though. All the players were heading to celebrate with their families. According to the Indian Express, she had a Moroccan flag wrapped around her while she waited for him on the sidelines. He kissed her forehead, and she placed a kiss on his cheeks. Later, he uploaded an Instagram picture of himself giving his mother a kiss on the forehead along with the caption, "I love you, Mom."
In order to give her son Ashraf a comfortable living, Saida Mou, Ashraf's mother, used to clean homes in Spain. Her husband was a street vendor. Their lives were forever altered by football; Hakimi married the wonderful Spanish actress Hiba Abouk, and only a few months ago, they were both featured on the cover of Vogue. However, all began in Madrid's impoverished streets. “My mother cleaned the houses and my father was a street vendor. We come from a modest family that struggled to earn a living. Today I fight every day for them. They sacrificed themselves for me. They deprived my brothers of many things for me to succeed,” Achraf Hakimi once told Bundesliga.
Hakimi, who was born in Madrid and could have played for Spain, decided to represent Morocco instead because of his parents. When he was just 7 years old and making an impression at his club, a letter suddenly showed up at their house. When he realized it was from Real Madrid's illustrious club, "Los Blancos," his father was astounded. At first, Hakimi wasn't convinced. "I thought it was a lie, that my father was pulling my leg", he said. In response to being asked why he chose to represent Morocco, he said, “In Paris, you play for the team of the city, but it’s not the same to play with the team of your country,” he explains. “Millions and millions of people are going to support you because you play for them. It’s like you play for your grandfather and their grandfathers. You play for a lot of people, a lot of Moroccans.”
The mother of Hakimi is not the only Moroccan football fan who has traveled to Qatar to cheer for her son during the 2022 World Cup, though. As per Aljazeera, all Moroccan team members are entitled to an all-inclusive vacation to Qatar, under the directives of coach Walid Regragui and Royal Moroccan Football Federation president Fouzi Lekjaa. Morocco's headquarters at the Wyndham Doha West Bay hotel thus occasionally resembles a sweet parent-run summer camp. The journey was a once-in-a-lifetime chance for some, including Regragui's mother Fatima. Moroccan players' happy parents have bragged about their sons and how they love all the "boys" on the team whenever television boom microphones have been put in their faces.
Achraf Hakimi goes straight to his mother, to celebrate his winning penalty against Spain. pic.twitter.com/YA2HLQdY3w— • (@Alhamdhulillaah) December 6, 2022
In addition to posting heartwarming messages on social media, Regragui's approach to gaining intangible benefits that will show on the field includes the creation of positive energy. At the Mohamed VI Complex in Maamoura, he made the following statement shortly after starting his new job: "Our success is not possible without our parents' happiness." Although Morocco is not one of the favorites in the 2018 World Cup, they have already taken their supporters and families by surprise by making it to the round of 16 for the first time since 1986. They have also become a team that many neutrals are supporting, perhaps because of touching situations like Hakimi's with his mother.