Saudi Arabia defeated Argentina 2-1 within the largest shock in World Cup historical past.
Lionel Messi was given Argentina An early lead towards the Center Jap nation with a Tenth-minute penalty.
The South Individuals then scored three objectives for offside within the subsequent 35 minutes, signaling a heavy defeat. Saudi Arabia was doubtless.
However two objectives in 5 minutes early within the second half turned the tide of the sport with the Buckeyes providing 500-1 odds to win. The World Cup Earlier than the match begins.
The Saudis needed to maintain on for nearly 14 minutes of added time, earlier than the referee blew the full-time whistle, prompting jubilation from their gamers and supporters on the Lucille Stadium.
The match was performed in an uncommon ambiance, after Argentina’s historically rowdy crowd of 1000’s of Saudis who had crossed the border to cheer on their staff.
“Our staff makes our goals come true!” And “The place’s Messi? We beat him!”, chanted the green-clad Saudi followers, greeting every clearance from their protection with deafening roars.
Whereas Argentina dominated possession and compelled saves from Saudi goalkeeper Mohamed Al Owais, they didn’t put sustained strain on the second-bottom staff within the match behind Ghana.
Argentina had been second favorites to elevate the trophy earlier than a ball was kicked, having gone 36 matches unbeaten.
Their final defeat was towards Brazil three years in the past.
Whereas followers in Saudi Arabia rejoiced, the outcome will reignite issues about so-called sportswashing – which the nation’s rulers have accused together with host nation Qatar.
Sports activities laundering is the apply of utilizing sports activities to enhance the repute of organizations accused of wrongdoing.
Saudi Arabia has a largely appalling human rights document, with extreme restrictions on freedom of expression and the rights of ladies and immigrants.
In a press release launched shortly earlier than the beginning of the video games, a spokesperson for the United Nations human rights workplace stated 17 individuals had been executed in Saudi Arabia since November 10.
The spokesperson described the figures as “very unhappy”.
In keeping with the European Saudi Group for Human Rights, 67 executions had been carried out within the nation in 2021, double the earlier 12 months’s whole.