- Saudi Arabia dealt Argentina a shock defeat on Tuesday, November 22
- Lionel Messi found the net for his nation but the game was turned on its head by the Green Falcons
- Messi admitted after the game that his side had no excuses for the defeat
- Argentina will have to look for points in their remaining games against Mexico and Poland
Lionel Messi has called on his side to be ‘more united than ever’ as he insists his country has no excuses after a shock defeat to Saudi Arabia in their World Cup opener on Tuesday.
Saudi Arabia produced the upset of the World Cup after coming from behind to claim a famous 2-1 victory over a nation considered one of the favourites to win this edition of the global spectacle.
The shock result leaves Argentina needing a positive result against Mexico and Poland to stand any chance of making it out of the group stages, and Messi is all too aware of this fact.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, who has the weight of the nation on his shoulders, admitted after the game that his team had little excuses after succumbing to Saudi Arabia.
Exciting feature: Check out news exactly for YOU ➡️ find "Recommended for you" block and enjoy!
'We knew that (Saudi) Arabia is a team with good players, that moves the ball well and that advances the line a lot. We work on it, but we speed up a bit.’ Messi said as per Argentina’s official Twitter account.
'There are no excuses. We are going to be more united than ever. This group is strong and they have shown it.
Massive win for Saudi Arabia
Going into the tournament, Saudi Arabia were considered one of the underdogs, especially because of their notorious record of shipping in goals against the big guns.
It almost looked like it would be the same case on Tuesday after Messi scored from the penalty spot within the first quarter of an hour, but Herve Renard’s men did brilliantly to operate on a high line and constantly catch the Argentines offside.
Notably, this was the first win for Saudi Arabia at the World Cup since 1994.
Fans blame Argentina coach for defeat
Sports Brief also earlier reported on fans’ take on the Argentina defeat, as many believed La Albiceleste struggled in defence because of coach Lionel Scaloni’s decision to bench Lisandro Martinez.
Martinez, who has 10 caps for Argentina, has been instrumental for Manchester United under Erik Ten Hag since making the switch to Old Trafford from Ajax.
He was eventually brought on, but it proved to be too little too late.
Source: Sports Brief News