A year after the thunderstorm… 90 minutes pushed Argentina to the top of the world

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(Aden Al-Ghad) Consequences:

A full year has passed since the historic victory of the Saudi national team over Argentina 2-1, in the final of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, a result that laid the foundation for the achievement of the “Tango Dancers”, who later won the title

On November 22, 2022, it was not normal for Saudi Arabian football players, and although the “Green” team could not qualify for the quarter-finals later, its victory over Argentina, led by the living legend Lionel Messi, will be immortalized in the annals of history forever.

The Argentine national team entered the match as an extraordinary candidate to obtain the three points, within a group that also includes the Mexican and Polish national teams.

The events of the half were exciting, as the Argentines took the lead with a penalty scored by Messi, before video technology canceled a goal scored by Lautaro Martinez before the end of the first half, due to offside.

The Saudis, led by their French coach Hervé Renard, believed in their chances of turning the score around despite the difference in individual skills, and they had what they wanted when they scored two goals within just 5 minutes, the first from a counter attack by Saleh Al-Shehri, and the second from an individual effort and a violent shot from the star Salem Al-Dosari.

The Argentine team tried to adjust the result and return to the course of the match, but the Saudi defense stood against all the attacks, and goalkeeper Muhammad Al-Owais played a key role to achieve victory for his team, after blocking one ball after another , so the match ended with a valuable victory for Saudi Arabia in front of an audience that stood unable to explain what had happened.

Immediately after the end of the match, critics began to doubt the ability of the Argentine team to win the first round, and the resounding defeat against Saudi Arabia constituted a real test of the mental state of the players and their ability to overcome what happened, so that the team can get out of the bottleneck.

Messi and his team-mates realized that another disappointing performance would put them in trouble ahead of the title favourites, especially after the early exit of the 2018 World Cup in Russia by the French national team.

The coach of the Argentine national team Lionel Scaloni rearranged his cards, and the team was able to achieve victory in the second match against Mexico with two clean goals, before defeating Poland with the same result, to qualify for the quarter-finals as leaders, at the same time. when the Saudis were satisfied with their historic victory, to occupy the last place in the group.

Critics’ fears over the possibility of Argentina continuing in the tournament have eased somewhat, and it has become clear that the players need defeat against Saudi Arabia to bring them back to reality, so they have approached their match against Australia in the last 16 with realism. , to emerge victorious with a score of 2-1.

Argentina played a very tough test against the Netherlands in the quarter-finals, and almost won easily when they took the lead with two goals from Nahuel Molina and Messi, but the Dutchman Wout Wijkhorst scored two late goals, forcing the two teams to resort to two extra periods and then penalties, who finally smiled at the Argentines.

Argentina’s mental strength strengthened as they cruised to an easy 3-0 semi-final win over Croatia, before they used penalties to beat France in the final after two extra periods ended in a 3-3 draw.

Messi realized his eternal dream of winning the World Cup title, and Argentina lifted the cup for the third time in its history, and since the defeat against Saudi Arabia, its record remained unbeaten in 14 consecutive matches, before it was defeated by Uruguay (0 -2) on Friday evening in the 2026 World Cup qualifiers.

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