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Most Saudi fans optimistic about World Cup draw: Poll

The match between Saudi Arabia and Russia will be on June 14, 2018. (Photo source: Twitter @footytoonz)
JEDDAH: The draw for FIFA’s 2018 World Cup took place on Friday, with the opening game on June 14 between host Russia and Saudi Arabia. In the same group A, Egypt will play against Uruguay.
According to a poll posted on Twitter by “Action Ya Dawri,” a famous Saudi football TV show, 55 percent of Saudi fans are optimistic about the draw results, 25 percent are concerned and 20 percent are disappointed.
A viral video displays a sense of solidarity between Saudis and Egyptians for being in the same group. At the end of the video, someone tells his friend: “We have no one by our side but each other.”
Mohammed from Egypt tweeted: “Saudis are happy to have us in the same group, and we are happy to have them, while Russia and Uruguay are happy to have us both!!!”
Gamal Arif, a Saudi football analyst, said: “Russia isn’t like Spain. It won’t be hard to defeat them. We’re supposed to win over Egypt and draw with Uruguay.”
Sports commentator Sami Al-Qurashi tweeted: “There are no easy teams in the World Cup, we should look at the opening match with Russia positively, Saudi Arabia is the first Arab team to play in the opening of the World Cup ever.”
The president of the Saudi Football Federation (SFF) said in a press release: “The opening matches usually take the spotlight, therefore the Saudi team will be at the forefront of the most prominent event in the World Cup, which is positive from different angles. Also, facing the Egyptian team in this group is an opportunity to let one of us pass to the second round. And I do not exaggerate when I say that the two of us, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, may succeed in passing to the second round together.”
The SFF has chosen Juan Antonio, the Chilean coach who resigned after failing to lead the South American champions to the 2018 World Cup, to lead the Saudi national team.

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