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Hakim Ziyech recalled to Moroccan national team despite early retirement

Hakim Ziyech is set to come out of international retirement as he has been included in the Moroccan squad for the upcoming friendlies.

The Chelsea forward had announced earlier this year that he was hanging up his boots on his international career following a drawn-out dispute with former manager Vahid Halilhodzic.

However, the former Ajax star will feature for the national team for the first time in a year, with new manager Walid Regragui recalling him for the friendlies against Chile and Paraguay this month.

Ziyech’s form at the club level leaves a lot to be desired, as his performances have been on a downward spiral since moving to Stamford Bridge.

He has also experienced a difficult start to the new season, featuring in only two games in the Premier League with no signs of improvement.

However, with Thomas Tuchel gone, Ziyech will be hoping to revive his career under new manager Graham Potter.

The 29-year-old was heavily linked with an exit during the summer transfer window, and a return to Ajax appeared to be on the cards.

However, a transfer didn’t materialise as the Eredivisie champions ended up signing Lucas Ocampos from Sevilla.

Moroccan manager Regragui appears to be counting on Ziyech, who has scored 17 goals in 40 appearances, en route to the World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

Furthermore, his addition will strengthen the attack, which boasts the likes of Youssef En-Nesyri, Munir El Haddadi, Sofiane Boufal and Ez Abde.

It remains to be seen whether Potter sees Ziyech in his plans or if he will be overlooked as he was during Tuchel’s reign.

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