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'Pure madness': Argentina's FIFA World Cup loss to Saudi Arabia leaves Twitter shocked

'Pure madness': Argentina's FIFA World Cup loss to Saudi Arabia leaves Twitter shocked

The Asian champions scored a stunning equaliser through Saleh Al Shehri just a few minutes into the second half. Then Salem Al Dawsari doubled the lead for his side, courtesy of a brilliant solo goal.

In the first half, Lionel Messi opened the scoring from the spot after VAR intervention saw Argentina earn a penalty against Saudi Arabia. In the first half, Lionel Messi opened the scoring from the spot after VAR intervention saw Argentina earn a penalty against Saudi Arabia.

Lionel Messi's Argentina succumbed to a shock 1-2 defeat against Saudi Arabia in their opening FIFA World Cup 2022 match in Doha on Tuesday. This is one of the biggest upsets in recent World Cup history. Messi’s men dominated the first half of the match, but the Asian nation threw caution to the wind to come up with one of the biggest World Cup wins in recent years.

On his fifth and final quest for the only major trophy to elude him, the 35-year-old Messi scored a 10th minute penalty in a dominant first half display where he and Lautaro Martinez also had three goals disallowed for offside.  

Just minutes into the second half, Saudi Arabia scored a stunning equaliser through Saleh Al Shehri and then Salem Al Dawsari doubled the lead for his side, courtesy of a brilliant solo goal. Despite plenty of possession after that, Argentina were unable to penetrate Saudi Arabia, who were competing in their sixth World Cup but had never previously won an opening game.

The entire game was played in an extraordinary atmosphere at the Lusail Stadium, with Argentina's traditionally massive and raucous following matched by the thousands of Saudis who had come over the border to cheer on their team.

The result broke Argentina's amazing 36-match undefeated run and stopped them from matching the previous international record of 37 games unbeaten held by Italy.
 

Football enthusiasts were taken aback with the shocking win. Twitter users mocked Argentina team and called it the worst possible start for Lionel Messi and his team.

The two goals in a five minute spell also saw La Albiceleste's 36-game uneaten run, dating back to 2019 where they lost to Brazil in the Copa America. The Asian country with a risky high defensive line were lucky in the first half when when three times Argentina had put the ball in the net, but were declined by an offside call.

Messi's record

Messi literally kicked off Argentina's 2022 FIFA World Cup campaign with an easy kick from the penalty spot sending the Saudi Arabian goal-keeper on the wrong side. The ace footballer surpassed Gabriel Batistuta (1994, 1998 and 2002) and Diego Maradona (1982, 1986 and 1994) records by becoming the first player to score for Argentina at four World Cup events. Interestingly, Messi is the only fifth player to score a goal at four different World Cup events. But alas, the record didn't help the team. Twitter users shared their hilarious reactions.

It was the first time since 1958 against Germany that Argentina have lost a World Cup match after scoring the first goal, and also the first time since 1930 they have lost a World Cup match when leading at half-time. 

Lionel Scaloni's men face Mexico on November 26, where they'll most likely need a win for any chance of making it out of Group C.