Saudi Arabia faces Ecuador and USA in friendly matches later this month as their preparation for the showpiece event in Qatar continues. Our sportsbook is offering a great range of betting markets and props for the World Cup.
World Cup Experience
The Green Falcons made their World Cup debut in 1994 in the USA. They then qualified again in 1998, 2002, and 2018 but failed to take home the trophy. The country’s greatest achievement was reaching the last sixteen in 1994. Shock wins over Belgium and Morocco saw them reach the knockout stages, where Sweden proved too strong and triumphed 3-1.
Although their experience in the later stages of the competition is not great, they have tasted victories in other competitions such as the AFC Asian Cup and the FIFA Arab Cup. In addition, Saudi Arabia became the first AFC member to reach the final of a senior FIFA competition in 1992 when it won the King Fahd Cup.
The Green Falcons sit at position 49, just after Romania. The country’s highest FIFA ranking was position 21 in 2004, while their lowest was position 126 in 2012. They were drawn into Group C along Argentina, Poland, and Mexico, and they are priced at +700 to make it out of the group stages according to the latest soccer odds.
Strong Campaign and Gelled Squad
Saudi Arabia finished first in the qualification campaign losing just one in 10 games. Wins over Japan and Australia saw them qualify with two games before the end of the campaign. A sixth World Cup appearance is just a reward for an excellent qualification campaign but also means that the draw against China and the win against Australia marked the start of preparation for the big event.
Back in June, they played Venezuela and Colombia in two friendly games on neutral soil, losing both with the same 1-0 scoreline. The French boss Herve Renard was not happy with the outcome and must work hard to improve things in the attacking line.
Renard continued his second phase of preparation for the 2022 World Cup with another training camp in the Spanish city of Alicante, followed up with two friendlies later this month against the USMNT and Ecuador. Saudi Arabia has named a strong squad for the friendly games.
Most of their players perform in their domestic league for top teams like Al Hilal SFC, Al-Nassr FC, or Al-Shabab FC. They know they work well together because their skills and personalities fit well.
World Cup Expectations
The oil-rich state invested a lot in sports in general and soccer in particular, but don’t expect them to pull off the upset in Qatar, so if you’re betting online, make sure you fade them. They are leading a joint bid for the 2030 FIFA World Cup alongside Egypt and Greece, so we might see them play as hosts in eight years’ time.
Their record against top teams like Argentina, Poland, and Mexico is poor, but they have nothing to lose, so they will definitely play their chance. However, they will probably be thrilled if they return home with at least one point from three games.