Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia

Appearances at World Cups

The first appearance of Saudi Arabia in the final part of the World Cup was in 1994. It was the only time when Saudi Arabia advanced from the group and immediately lost later in the 1/8 finals to Sweden. From 1998 to 2006, the Arabians turned into a regular visitor of the tournament but performed a role of extras only each time. The last two world cups didn't have them, the squad simply couldn't qualify.

Saudi Arabia qualified for the Russian WC and even will play against the host country. Moreover, it did it at the last moment and going ahead of Australia in goal difference only. This all was accompanied by a change of coaches. This is why the ticket to the World Cup can be considered as big luck.

year

G

W

D

L

М

total

1994

4

2

1

1

5-6

1/8

1998

3

0

1

2

2-7

4 th place in group

2002

3

0

0

3

0-12

4 th place in group

2006

3

0

1

2

2-7

4 th place in group

Total

13

2

3

8

9-32

-

Head coach and best player

After experiences with Bert van Marwijk and Edgardo Bauza, the football federation of Saudi Arabia finally chose Argentinian specialist Juan Antonio Pizzi. This specialist must be famous to Russian fans. The Chilean squad caused a furore at the Confederations Cup last summer. Now Pizzi will come to the World Cup alone, Chile was thrown overboard. The former coach's guilt for it is bigger anyway.

Forward Mohammad Al-Sahlawi is supposed to be the leader of the squad. The Saudi Arabian forward with 16 goals became the best forward of the Russian WC qualification in line with very Robert Lewandowski. However, he scored a half of the goals in two matches against the small team of East Timor. Nowadays Sahlawi is playing in the local championship and has just recently exceeded the bar of 100 goals.

  • Preliminary squad: Al Mosailem – Al-Shahrani, Hawsawi, О. Hawsawi, Al-Harbi – Al-Faraj, Otayf, Al-Muwallad, Al-Jassim, Al Abed – Al-Sahlawi

Base camp and cities

The Arabians chose Saint Petersburg as a location during the participation in the World Cup. Though judging by the cities they will play in, it would be more logical to stay next to more habitual Caucasus from a perspective of religion. Saudi Arabia will meet with group stage opponents at three stadiums – in Moscow, Rostov-on-Don and Volgograd.

By Zulfat Shafigullin. Photo: fifa.com