S. Arabia declares public vacation after Arg. win


King Salman declared a public vacation in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday to mark the nationwide group’s gorgeous 2-1 upset over Lionel Messi‘s Argentina on the 2022 World Cup.

The information is a feather within the cap of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who really helpful the royal order, state media mentioned. Prince Mohammed was not seen on the match however had been entrance and centre on the match opening Sunday.

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One in every of Prince Mohammed’s brothers, Prince Saud, posted footage on Instagram exhibiting the crown prince prostrating in due to God in a room the place his different brother, Vitality Minister Prince Abdulaziz, was additionally current, proven holding a Saudi flag and standing subsequent to a smiling crown prince.

It was additionally a candy second for host Qatar, dealing with intense criticism over human rights within the conservative Muslim nation. Qatar’s emir draped the Saudi flag over his shoulders on the match. A Doha skyscraper flashed “Congratulations Greens.”

“Wow! I have all the feelings right now. We beat Argentina, one of the great teams!” mentioned Saad from Riyadh, who’s in Qatar for 2 weeks and was carrying a inexperienced Saudi Falcons scarf.

“Our guys played so well — everything went right inside the stadium today. It was amazing.”

On his fifth and remaining quest for the one main trophy to elude him, Messi, 35, scored a Tenth-minute penalty in a dominant first-half show by Argentina on Tuesday throughout which he and Lautaro Martinez additionally had three targets disallowed for offside.

However Saudi Arabia, the second-lowest-ranked group within the match, after Ghana, threw warning to the wind initially of the second half, charging at Argentina’s defence in entrance of a frenzied 88,012 crowd.

“Thank God, the players were up to it and we wiped them,” Saudi fan Abdelaziz al-Khwatem mentioned. “They were relying on one player, we competed as a team and we wiped them, we are up to it. Watch out for Saudi Arabia because when it hits, it hurts.”

A Saudi tv station confirmed an extended line of vehicles with veiled girls standing of their open sunroofs waving the Saudi flag. Celebrating kids gave the victory signal.

The gravity of the victory will finally sink in. Saudi Arabia is a group that had gained solely three World Cup matches in its historical past previous to the Tuesday sport.

“One for the books,” Saudi Arabia coach Hervé Renard mentioned. “Sometimes things are completely crazy.”

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Goalkeeper Mohammed Alowais, who made two key saves late within the sport to protect the win at Lusail Stadium north of Doha, was virtually subdued on the finish, maybe not greedy the magnitude of the upset.

“I am very happy about this result that we have been able to obtain against this very storied team,” Alowais mentioned solemnly. “We have prepared ourselves. We were 100% ready and hopefully we will have better results in the future. I felt we were especially good in the last minutes because we secured our three points.”

Not in simply the final minutes. Regardless of trailing 1-0 at half-time, Saleh Alshehri and Salem Aldawsari managed to attain a aim every early within the second half.

Then got here greater than 50 minutes, together with added time on the finish of the match on the referee’s discretion, of holding one of many match favorites at bay.

“All the stars aligned for us,” mentioned Renard, who gained the African Cup of Nations as coach of Zambia in 2012 after which once more with Ivory Coast in 2015.

Renard has additionally coached Angola and Morocco, which he guided to the 2018 World Cup in Russia. He took over Saudi Arabia in 2019.

“We made history for Saudi football,” Renard mentioned. “It will stay forever. This is the most important. But we also need to think about looking forward because we still have two games that are very, very difficult for us.”

Renard mentioned he requested his gamers to restrict the celebration after the sport to twenty minutes.

“That’s all,” he mentioned. “But there are still two games — or more.”

They nonetheless should face Poland on Saturday after which tackle Mexico subsequent Tuesday in Group C. Each are most likely nonetheless favorites towards Saudi Arabia regardless of the upset.

He additionally prompt one other doable reality: Messi and Argentina most likely underestimated Saudi Arabia, which is simply No. 51 within the FIFA rating. Argentina is No. 3.

“But you know the motivation is not like you are playing Brazil,” he added.

Data from Reuters and the Related Press was used on this report.

Supply hyperlink – espnfc.com

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