Argentina v Saudi Arabia player ratings: De Paul 4, Messi 6; Al Tambakti 9, Al Dawsari 8

The Falcons earn magnificent 2-1 victory over one of World Cup favourites in Qatar

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Saudi Arabia secured one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history when they defeated Lionel Messi's Argentina 2-1 in Qatar on Tuesday.

Two-time winners Argentina where 1-0 up at the break, thanks to a Messi penalty, but failed to turn up in the second half as fine finishes from Saleh Al Shehri and Salem Al Dawsari earned the Saudis a sensational victory at the Lusail Stadium.

Playing a risky high defensive line, the Saudis rode their luck in the first half when Argentina had the ball in the net three times – one by Messi and twice by Inter Milan attacker Lautaro Martinez – only to be denied by off-side calls.

It seemed Saudi Arabia were facing a long afternoon after VAR intervened to award a penalty when Saud Abdulhamid wrestled Leandro Paredes to the ground in the box at a corner.

Messi waited for goalkeeper Mohammed Al Owais to dive to his left before cooly rolling the ball into the opposite corner after 10 minutes.

But that proved to be Argentina's only goal of the game as the Saudis came out fighting in the second period.

First, Al Shehri ran on to a touch from Feras Al Brikan, beat Cristian Romero on the outside and slotted the ball back across goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez and into the far corner.

Suddenly the Argentines were rattled and five minutes later the turnaround was complete. Al Dawsari's clever turn in the box beat two defenders before he shifted the ball past a third and rifled a shot into the top far corner, via a touch from Martinez.

In the gallery above you can see the player ratings from Tuesday's game. To move on to the next photo, click on the arrows or swipe if using a mobile device.

Updated: November 23, 2022, 8:06 AM
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