The 2022 FIFA World Cup continued Tuesday with Argentina being stunned by Saudi Arabia, 2-1, snapping a 36-match unbeaten streak, the second longest such streak in international men’s soccer history. Argentina would have tied the 37-match record held by Italy with a win or draw.
Saudi Arabia STUNS Argentina | Full Match Highlights
This is Argentina’s first loss in a World Cup opener since 1990, a 1-0 defeat to Cameroon. For perspective, Argentina has appeared in every World Cup in that span. Ironically, Argentina ended up making the final in 1990, but lost to Germany.
Argentina, which entered its opener with the third-shortest odds to win the entire World Cup, now faces an uphill battle to get out of Group C with massive games against Mexico and Poland looming in the coming days.
Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, is the first team part of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to defeat Argentina in a World Cup match. It marks the fourth win ever for Saudi Arabia in the World Cup, improving their all-time record to 4-11-2 (W-L-D).
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Here are the top plays from Tuesday’s group stage action.
Argentina vs. Saudi Arabia
2nd minute: So close to an early goal!
It took just over 100 total seconds of 2022 World Cup play for Lionel Messi to record his first shot on goal, but a nice one-handed save from Saudi Arabia keeper Muhammad Al-Owais kept the game scoreless.
10th minute: Allow him to reintroduce himself
After Argentina was awarded a penalty kick after video review in the 10th minute, Messi stepped up and easily nailed his first goal of the 2022 World Cup.
Lionel Messi scores a PK in the 10th minute for Argentina to take a 1-0 lead over Saudi Arabia
Argentina’s Lionel Messi scores a penalty kick in the 10th minute after Saudi Arabia’s Mohamed Kanno makes the foul.
22nd minute: Messi almost had another!
The Argentine star seemed to have a clean breakaway for his second goal of the game but was ruled just barely offsides. The ruling was upheld on VAR.
27th minute: Another near miss
Argentina was left searching for its second goal after this Lautaro Martinez score was also narrowly ruled offsides.
35th minute: Offside AGAIN
Argentina found the back of the net four times in the first half, but Messi’s 10th minute penalty kick remains the only actual score thanks to three goals negated by offside calls.
Argentina caught offside seven total times in first half vs. Saudi Arabia
Argentina was caught offside seven total times, negating three goals in the first half.
Per OptaAnalyst, Argentina has been caught offside seven times in this match already. The last team to have more in a World Cup game were the Netherlands vs. Costa Rica in 2014 with 13 offside calls.
49th minute (first half extra time): Big loss for Saudis
Saudi Arabia captain Salman Al Faraj went down with an apparent injury just before the end of the first half. With the Saudis already under pressure thanks to Messi’s early goal, it could be a huge blow for the underdogs’ chances to pull off an upset.
48th minute (second half): Saudi Arabia ties it up!
Saudi Arabia’s Saleh Alshehri threads a beautiful ball to tie the score at one goal apiece and suddenly Argentina is on its heels.
Saudi Arabia’s Saleh Al-Shehri scores goal vs. Argentina
Watch Saudi Arabia’s Saleh Al-Shehri scoring a goal against Argentina in the 48′ in the 2022 Men’s FIFA World Cup.
53rd minute: Saudi Arabia takes the lead!
The Saudis are suddenly knocking on the door of one of the biggest World Cup upsets EVER after a laser from Salem Aldawsari to go up 2-1.
Saudi Arabia’s Salem Al Dawsari scores goal vs. Argentina in 53′ | 2022 FIFA World Cup
Watch Saudi Arabia’s Salem Al Dawsari scoring a goal against Argentina in the 53′ in the 2022 Men’s FIFA World Cup.
63rd minute: Huge save keeps the Saudis ahead
Another great save by Muhammad Al-Owais kept Saudi Arabia in the lead as Argentina pushed for an equalizer.
83rd minute: Near misses for Messi
Argentina is still looking to even the score and avoid a catastrophic upset, but Messi’s free kick went above the crossbar and his header two minutes later was saved by Al-Owais.
92nd minute: INSANE save
An incredible save by Saudi Arabia’s back line keeps them in the lead as Argentina continues to press for a goal:
101st minute: Another Saudi save for the upset!
Al-Owais made another incredible leaping save, helping Saudi Arabia pull off one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history over Argentina.
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