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"Best RB in the world" - Kylian Mbappe heaps high praise on PSG teammate Achraf Hakimi for AFCON performances

The Frenchman was in awe of his PSG teammate following his AFCON heroics
The Frenchman was in awe of his PSG teammate following his AFCON heroics
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Sachin Bhat

PSG ace Kylian Mbappe has praised his club teammate Achraf Hakimi.

The Moroccan, who's currently away at the African Cup of Nations in Cameroon, scored an impeccable free-kick to give his side the win against Malawi last night.

With the clock winding down and the match still tied at 1-1, the Atlas Lions wanted a moment of inspiration from their star man and he didn't disappoint.

Standing over a dead ball from roughly 30-yards out, the 23-year-old whipped one into the far post with unerring accuracy to make it 2-1 for his side.

πŸŽ₯| Excerpts of Ashraf Hakimi’s brilliant free-kick against Malawi. πŸ”₯WHAT A GOAL#TeamMorocco πŸ” World Class Right-back #CAN2021 https://t.co/oKIfufMDSG

Malawi were unable to come back into the match thereafter as Morocco advanced into the quarter-finals.

It was a brilliant piece of individual skill, so much so that even Mbappe couldn't help but wax lyrical about him.

He took to Twitter to hail Hakimi as the best right-back in the world.

"ACHRAF HAKIMI. BEST RB IN THE WORLD. GOOD NIGHT GUYS."

The tweet immediately sparked a firestorm, with many fans echoing Mbappe's sentiments. Some even urged the Moroccan to take over PSG's free-kick duties from Lionel Messi.

Achraf Hakimi is pure class 🀩 https://t.co/AKwRFQkQCC

PSG star stepping up for Morocco in Ziyech's absence

Also, this wasn't a flash in the pan performance from the PSG man. Hakimi had scored a similar goal in the previous match against Gabon and interestingly, from the same position!

The former Real Madrid defender went for the goal directly on that occasion too and clinically dispatched the free-kick to equalize for his side in the 84th minute.

It secured the Atlas Lions a point to progress into the knockout stages as Group C winners and he's now proved to be their hero in the Round of 16 match again.

2 - Achraf Hakimi (Morocco) has become the first player to score two direct free kick goals at the same Africa Cup of Nations edition since Geremi with Cameroon in 2008. Majestic. #AFCON2021 #TeamMorocco https://t.co/KgDwsESKgg

Morocco had their task cut out without their playmaker Hakim Ziyech, who was not included in the AFCON squad by head coach Vahid Halilhodzic.

The Chelsea star fell out with the Bosnian last year over a disciplinary issue and he's been frozen out ever since.

While it's a big loss, Hakimi has stepped up to the plate for them in his absence, demonstrating his ability to lead them with valuable contributions.

He's struck twice in the tournament, both from free-kicks, and is the joint top-scorer in the Moroccan squad as well as the top scoring defender in the competition.

With a daunting fixture against Ivory Coast or Egypt coming up next in the last-8, Morocco will look up to him for inspiration.


Edited by Diptanil Roy
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