scorecardresearch

TRENDING TOPICS

FIFA World Cup: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman declares holiday after their 2-1 win over Lionel Messi's Argentina

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has declared Wednesday a holiday for the private and government sectors after the national team’s win over Argentina, as reported by the Saudi Press Agency. Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari scored as Saudi Arabia beat Argentina 2-1 in their FIFA World Cup opener.

Advertisement
King Salman declares holiday after Saudi Arabia beat Argentina (AP)

In Short

  • King Salman declares holiday after Saudi Arabia beat Argentina
  • Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari scored in Saudi Arabia’s win
  • Saudi Arabia beat Argentina 2-1 in FIFA World Cup

By India Today Web Desk: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has declared Wednesday a holiday for the private and government sectors after the national team’s win over Argentina, as reported by the Saudi Press Agency. Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari scored as Saudi Arabia beat Argentina 2-1 in their FIFA World Cup opener.

advertisement

The Lusail Stadium hosted the game in a remarkable atmosphere, with thousands of Saudis crossing the border to support their team, joining Argentina's customarily large and boisterous fan base.

Argentina were on course to equal Italy's record unbeaten run of 37 games after the mercurial Messi opened his fifth and final World Cup with a 10th-minute penalty. Messi scored the penalty against Saudi Arabia after a video review spotted a foul before Argentina had three goals disallowed. Messi, 35, beat Saudi goalkeeper Mohammed Al-Owais on a breakaway, but that goal, as well as two others by his teammate Lautaro Martinez, were ruled offside.

But La Albiceleste were stunned in the second half when Saudi Arabia scored two goals in five minutes to take a 2-1 lead in Qatar. Saleh Al-Shehri leveled for Herve Renard's side minutes after halftime with a low shot before Salem Al-Dawsari curled in a brilliant strike from the edge of the penalty area to give Saudi Arabia the lead.

They held on to the slender lead to register a historic victory over the tournament favorites.

Argentina’s Lautaro Martinez said the loss hurts the team a lot as they were dreaming of starting the World Cup with a win.

“This hurts a lot. We were dreaming of starting the World Cup with a win. But it's happened and now we have to train and think forward,” said Martinez.

Speaking after the match, Abdulelah Al-Malki said Herve Renard’s half-time talk stoked up the whole team.

“Renard made us cry with motivation before the match and stoked us up during halftime,” said Al-Malki.