World Cup 2018: Saudi Arabia, Egypt Play For Pride In Group A Dead Rubber
Saudi Arabia and Egypt, both eliminated, will play for pride in their final Group A clash at Volgograd Arena.
- Egypt and Saudi Arabia clash in a Group A match
- Both teams have been eliminated from the World Cup
- Egypt's World Cup has been a fairytale turned horror story
No-one expected Egypt, Morocco or Saudi Arabia to win the FIFA World Cup 2018 but for all three to crash out on the same day was a disaster for Arab football. Saudi Arabia will play for pride when they face Egypt, another eliminated team, in their final Group A clash at Volgograd Arena on Monday. Saudi Arabia have played two matches in the tournament so far – against Russia and Uruguay and suffered defeats on both occasions. Saudi Arabia have conceded six goals in their previous two matches and failed to score a single one. On the other hand, Egypt have lost their previous two encounters but managed to add one goal to their tally in the mega event.
Saudi's Argentinian coach Juan Antonio Pizzi was asked by journalists why the team had failed to make Saudi Arabian fans "proud" of their team.
Turki al-Sheikh, the Saudi Arabian sports authority chief, lashed out at the players after the Russia debacle in a Twitter video, claiming the performance was a personal insult.
"We've done everything we could for the national team players," he thundered, before adding: "They've blackened my face."
Egypt's tournament has been a fairytale turned horror story with the injury saga of their key player Mohamed Salah.
Liverpool's top scorer last season missed the defeat to Uruguay with a shoulder injury suffered in last month's Champions League final.
Egypt crashed out of the World Cup after losing to Russia 3-1 on Tuesday, with Salah returning to action for the first time in three weeks following a shoulder injury but unable to save his team.
Likely Saudi Arabia XI: Al-Mosailem, Al-Berik, Hawsawi, Al-Bulaihi, Al-Shahrani, Otayf, Al-Faraj, Al-Shehri, Kanno, Al-Dawsari, Al-Muwallad.
Likely Egypt XI: El-Hadary, Fathy, Gabr, Hegazi, Abdel Shafy, Elneny, Hamed, Salah, Said, Trezeguet, Kahraba.
(With AFP Inputs)