Saudi Arabia football federation chief Adel Ezzat has named three players who will be punished when they return home from the World Cup after their disastrous opening-day defeat to the host nation, Russia.
Many described their performance as one of the worst ever at the World Cup, after the Middle Eastern nation were defeated 5-0 by Russia in the opening game of the tournament in Moscow on Thursday.
Reacting to the game, Adel was quoted as saying in the Al-Youm Assabaa newspaper, ‘We are very disappointed by the defeat. This result is totally unsatisfactory, because it does not reflect the true level of our preparedness.
Several players will face a penalty – goalkeeper Abdullah Al-Mayouf, striker Mohammad Al-Sahlawi and defender Omar Hawsawi.’
Their punishment have not been revealed yet, but many are scared for the players who come from a country where they still live in fear of capital punishment.
Another criticism also came from the chairman of the General Sport Authority, Turki bin Abdulmohsen Al-Sheikh, who described the game as a ‘total fiasco’ in a video posted on his Twitter page.
He said: ‘These players have made my face go black with embarrassment and fury.
‘This is down to their weak potential and ability. We did everything for this team and this generation of players, everything.
‘We brought them the best technical support, a team of the highest level and we paid them for three years.
‘But now we see they have limited capabilities.
‘They have achieved just five percent of what is expected and required of them.’
Saudi Arabia still have two more games against Luis Suarez’s Uruguay or Mohamed Salah’s Egypt in Group A.