So the big day has arrived as Saudi Arabia get ready to strut their stuff in front of the the glob when they get the World Cup under way against Russia today. Here is how the Green Falcons fared in their past six matches at the tournament.
World Cup 2006 — drew with Tunisia 2-2:
Got their tournament off to a good start with goals from Yasser Al-Qahtani and Sami Al-Jaber grabbing a point in Munich. Al-Jaber, the Al-Hilal legend, scored two minutes after coming on as a substitute. The draw may have felt like a loss, though, as they thought they had all three points in the bag until Radhi Jaïdi struck in injury time for Tunisia.
World Cup 2006 — lost to Ukraine 4-0:
The good start against Tunisia was undone with this big defeat to the eastern Europeans. This was a good Ukraine side, though, with Andriy Shevchenko and Sergei Rebrov both getting on the scoresheet.
World Cup 2006 — lost to Spain 1-0:
The Green Falcons exited the competition with another defeat, but held their heads high after having a good go against a Spain side featuring Fernando Torres, Andres Iniesta and Raul. Juanito won the tie for Spain with a 36th-minute goal.
World Cup 2002 — lost to Germany 8-0:
The side’s heaviest defat at the tournament was delivered by a very good side containing Michael Ballack and Miroslav Klose. Klose claimed a hat-trick and ended the tournament as the Golden Boot winner. Germany ended up finishing in third place.
World Cup 2002 — Lost to Cameroon 1-0:
A Samuel Eto’o strike after 66 minutes was enough to get the Africans the win in a tightly-fought clash. Cameron fielded a strong side with Geremi, Rigobert Song, Lauren and the late Marc Vivien Foe.
World Cup 2002 — Lost to Ireland 3-0:
Already out of the tournament the Green Falcons put up little resistance to a Robbie Keane-inspired Ireland. Keane gave Ireland the perfect start with a goal after seven minutes and then Gary Breen (61) and Damien Duff (87) finished things off.