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6 Interesting Facts About Saudi Arabia Men’s National Team

6 Interesting Facts About Saudi Arabia Men’s National Team

Nigeria’s Super Eagles will take on Saudi Arabia in an international friendly game in Portugal.

The game comes up on Friday, 13 October inside the Estadio Municipal de Portimao.

This is the second time the Super Eagles and Saudi Arabia will meet with their first encounter ending 0-0 in a friendly game in 2010.

Ahead of Friday’s game, Completesports.com’s JAMES AGBEREBI takes a look at six interesting facts about the Saudi Arabia senior men’s team.

– Made World Cup debut at USA 1994

Just like Nigeria’s Super Eagles, Saudi Arabia’s senior men’s national team made their debut at the World Cup at the 1994 edition in the United States of America.

Saudi Arabia were one of three teams (Nigeria and Greece were the other two debutants) who made their first appearance at the World Cup.

– Got to World Cup Round of 16 at maiden appearance

Despite making their debut, Saudi Arabia made it to the round of 16 stage.

They emerged from a group that had the Netherlands, Belgium and Morocco.

After losing their opening game 2-1 to the Netherlands, they defeated Morocco 2-1 and edged Belgium 1-0 to advance.

In the round of 16, they lost 3-1 to Sweden who finished third.

Three-time Asian Cup champions

Saudi Arabia have been crowned Asian Cup champions three times – 1984, 1988 and 1996.

The Saudis emerged champions at the 1984 edition despite making their debut appearance at the tournament.

A 2-0 win in the final was enough to see them become Asian champions for the very first time.

– Biggest ever defeat was against an African team

Saudi Arabia’s biggest ever defeat in their history was handed to them by an African team, Egypt.

The Pharaohs, who were then known as United Arab Republic, hammered the Saudis 13-0 in the encounter played in Casablanca, Morocco on 3rd September, 1961.

– Runners-up at maiden FIFA Confed Cup in 1992

Saudi Arabia hosted the first-ever FIFA Confederations Cup in 1992 which was won by Argentina.

The competition was known back then as the King Fahd Cup named after Fahd of Saudi Arabia.

The 1992 tournament was the only one not to feature a group stage and only featured four nations with Argentina beating Saudi 3-1 in the final.

– Roberto Mancini is head coach of Saudi Arabia

The Saudi Arabia men’s national team is handled by Italian coach Roberto Mancini.

As a player, Mancini was part of the Sampdoria team that won the Serie A title in the 1990/91 season and the European Cup Winners’ Cup (now defunct) in 1990.

He helped Sampdoria reach the final of the Champions League in 1992 which they lost 1-0 to Barcelona.

As coach he won the Serie A title with Inter Milan and the Premier League title with Manchester City.

Also, he led Italy to win the 2020 European Championship after a penalty shootout win against England inside the Wembley stadium.

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  • Chima E Samuels 6 months ago

    Under Mancini Nigeria should be having no excuse winning this match easily. In fact the two friendly matches are weak opponents for my liking. Compared to Ghana playing USA and Mexico!!!

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