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Herve Renard explains how his Saudi Arabia side defeated Argentina

Herve Renard explains how his Saudi Arabia side defeated Argentina

Saudi Arabia head coach Herve Renard has explained how his side defeated Argentina in their World Cup opener today.

The Arabians pulled off an improbable feat against Lionel Scaloni’s previously unbeaten La Albiceleste, running out 2-1 winners at the Lusail Iconic Stadium.

Lionel Messi gave his side the lead by sending Saudi’s goalkeeper the wrong way with a coolly taken penalty kick.

However, goals from Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari within a five-minute interval was enough to sink the Argentines and end their 36-match unbeaten run.

Renard explained the tactical genius behind his side’s victory (via Foot Mercato): “We have a tactic not to go too high, but not too low either. 

“It is played on one or two offside positions in the first period. Playing in front of our defence and waiting, we couldn’t have done it all game. 

“Unfortunately, in the first half, our two attackers did not press the two central defenders and (Leandro) Paredes enough.

“In the second half, well they got teased at half time, I said to them: ‘it’s good, you trotted well in the first half’. And then they went for something that makes the difference sometimes.”

Having pulled off an unforeseen victory, Saudi Arabia currently are top of Group C ahead of Mexico’s clash with Poland.

Argentina were labelled as one of the favourites to win the competition, but their opening-day defeat has left them in a precarious position.

They will take on Mexico next before tackling Poland, and Scaloni’s team will know that nothing but maximum points in their subsequent group games will do for their aspirations.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia will take on Poland in their second World Cup game, brimming with confidence and looking to consolidate their spot at the top of the group.

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