By Mohammed Najah
Tripoli, 27 June 2013:
Members of the Libyan Youth Football team were greeted with spontaneous applause from other travellers when . . .[restrict]they arrived back from Turkey at Tripoli International Airport this evening.
The Libyan players went out of the Games with their heads held high after a great run for the football gold medal, which unfortunately came to an end after a 3-1 defeat to Morocco, the eventual champions, in the semi-finals.
At half time the teams were drawing one all. Morocco’s Hisham Khalwa opened the scoring but the Libyans bombarded the Moroccan goalkeeper with many chances and Hamdou Al-Masri managed to level the game in the 34th minute .
However the second half saw aggressive attacking from the Moroccan players and the Libyan defenders could not keep up with the pace. Morocco scored two successive goals in the 71st and 78th minute of the match.
The Libyan team had defeated Italy 2-1 in order to meet Morocco in the semi-finals of these, the 17th Mediterranean Games.
After a slow start in the group stage with a 2-2-draw against Macedonia and a 2-1 defeat by Tunisia, the Libyan team then picked up three points off of Italy to eliminate them, take second place in the group and go through to the next round.