Saudi Arabia's last five World Cup matches

Yasser Al-Kahtani celebrates his goal against Tunisia in 2006. (Getty)
Updated 14 June 2018
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Saudi Arabia's last five World Cup matches

  • Green Falcons kick off the tournament today against Russia
  • They are bidding for only their third ever win at the finals

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. 


Godolphin happy with Thunder Snow ahead of Dubai World Cup defense

Updated 25 March 2019
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Godolphin happy with Thunder Snow ahead of Dubai World Cup defense

  • Five-year old bidding to become first horse to win back-to-back Dubai World Cups.
  • $12 million race takes place at Meydan on Saturday.

LONDON: Thunder Snow is preparing well as he bids to become the first horse to win back-to-back Dubai World Cups, according to Godolphin trainer Saeed bin Suroor.
The five-year-old memorably won the showcase $12 million race at Meydan by five and three-quarter lengths, winning in a track record time last year. He returned to the track on Super Saturday two weeks ago, finishing second in the Group 1 Al-Maktoum Challenge Round Three.
And Godolphin are expecting big things from him in the famous race. Bin Suroor, the most successful handler in the history of the 2000m dirt feature with eight winners to his name, is feeling confident.
“He did his final serious piece of work on Saturday and went very well indeed,” the Godolphin trainer said. “He needed his Super Saturday outing — his first run since November — badly and has come on a lot for it. We expect him to run a big race under conditions we know suit him, but obviously it is a good race.”
Thunder Snow has already made history as the only horse to win both the Group 2 UAE Derby and Group 1 Dubai World Cup, but if he is to win this Saturday then he will be revered for years to come.
One of his big rivals in the race will be Yoshida. Trained by Bill Mott he arrived in Dubai on March 19 in preparation for the cash-rich race. The Japanese-bred son of Heart’s Cry landed in the Emirate off a sixth-place finish in the inaugural Group 1 Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational at Gulfstream Park.
He won the Turf Classic at Churchill Downs, as well as the prestigious Woodward at Saratoga last year and Riley Mott, assistant to his father Bob, said Yoshida is looking good ahead of the big race.
“He’s settled in really well,” he said. “He traveled great and we’re very happy with him. The facilities here are top class. This is my seventh time over here and we’re treated very well.”
Yoshida went out just after 7:00 a.m. in Monday to stretch his legs over the famous dirt track.
“He just had a routine gallop this morning and we let him stand in the gate. Nothing too serious,” Mott said.
Jose Ortiz, who has piloted Yoshida though his last two starts and was aboard for the Grade 1 score at Churchill Downs, will make his first appearance in Dubai. Mott said he expects Ortiz, who guided Yoshida to a closing fourth-place effort in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, will have plenty of options in the 2000m race.
“It sounds like there’s a lot of pace from the local horses, but we have a horse that’s pretty versatile in the way he runs,” Mott said. “He’s able to adapt to the pace scenario. It’s just a matter of how the race develops in front of him.”