Saudi Arabia comeback stuns Argentina after Messi scores early
What began with a Lionel Messi goal ended as one of the biggest group stage upsets in World Cup history, as Saudi Arabia struck twice in the second half to beat Argentina 2-1 in Lusail on Tuesday.
Messi converted a penalty and Argentina looked set to roll its unbeaten streak to 37 games. But Lautaro Martinez’s goal was pulled back for a razor-thin offside and the game hit halftime at 1-0.
Saudi coach Herve Renard then got two very nice goals from Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari In a four-minute span early in the second half.
Argentina out-attempted the Saudis 15-3 and held a 2.23-0.14 expected goals advantage but all that matters very little as Poland and Mexico will both feel a chance to win the group.
Here is everything you need for Argentina vs Saudi Arabia.
Lionel Messi goal video: World’s best converts penalty
Saleh Al-Shehri goal video: Saudis go level
Salem Al-Dawsari goal video: 2-1!
How to watch Argentina vs Saudi Arabia live, stream link and start time
Kick off: 5am ET, Tuesday
Stadium: Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)
Key storylines, players to watch closely
Can Saudi Arabia slow Messi, let alone Lautaro Martinez, Paulo Dybala, et cetera, et cetera?
Will this be the blast-off for the international careers of Alexis Mac Allister or Julian Alvarez?
And can a Saudi player catch the eye of the international community and even draw the player away from the nation’s domestic league?
Argentina quick facts
Current FIFA world ranking: 3
World Cup titles: 2 (1978, 1986)
World Cup appearances: 17
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from CONMEBOL (2nd place)
Coach: Lionel Scaloni
Key players: Lionel Messi, Angel de Maria, Lautaro Martinez
Saudi Arabia quick facts
Current FIFA world ranking: 51
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 5
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from AFC (Won Group B)
Coach: Herve Renard
Key players: Salem Al-Dawsari, Fahad Al-Muwallad, Mohammed Al-Owais