World Cup legends are made: Saudi Arabia 2-1 Argentina
By Jack Merry, Louise Graham, Sophie Wickes
51st ranked Saudi Arabia beat tournament favourites Argentina yesterday.
The result shocked the world with all the pre-game coverage aimed at Messi’s last world cup and his chances of winning the World Cup to crown his career. But as the final whistle blew Saudi Arabia made sure the whole world would be talking about them.
The match: What happened?
Argentina opened the match winning a penalty in the 10th minute with Messi scoring his 7th career World Cup goal. In the first shock of the game the next three Argentina goals were disallowed.
In the second half Saudi Arabia trumped Argentina with their own shock. Within 15 minutes Saleh Al-shehiri and Salem Al-Dawsari replaced Messi at the front of everyone’s minds. The two along with the rest of the players left Argentina and the rest of the world gobsmacked rounding out the game hanging on for another 40 minutes to give Qatar’s World Cup their first true World Cup moment on just the third day.
The fantastic Al-Dawsari winning strike put the Saudi Arabia fans into tears of adulation, seeing their country win for the first time since 1994 in the World Cup. The post-match celebrations of the players matched the wind whirl of a game. On the pitch the winning team looked like they couldn’t believe what they’d done, they followed this in the dressing room jumping for joy singing and dancing on the table:
Herve Renard’s Career
Saudi Arabia Head Coach cemented his name the sporting history of the nation. Herve Renard has headed the Saudis for three years.
Before his current spell he was highly revered in African national football winning the African Cup of Nations back-to-back with the Zambia and the Ivory Coast in 2012 and 2015 respectively. After this success he had a spell with Morocco getting them to their first world cup in 20 years at the past competition in 2018.
Herve Renard’s international achievements has left him a hero for many in these four nations.
The first match of the competition for both teams put Saudi Arabia top and Argentina bottom after Mexico and Poland drew later in the day.
Saudi Arabia will look to continue to write critics wrong against Poland on Saturday. If Messi’s career crowning World Cup is meant to be Argentina will have to beat Lewandowski led Poland.