World Cup 2022 day three: France defeat Australia as Saudi Arabia stun Lionel Messi’s Argentina

Follow the latest news and analysis from the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar

Salem Al Dawsari’s stunner sealed an extraordinary Saudi Arabia comeback win against Lionel Messi’s Argentina in a breathless clash that ranks among the greatest upsets in World Cup history. The Saudis emerged with a 2-1 win that puts Argentina’s progress beyond the group stage in serious doubt.

Denmark v Tunisia and Mexico v Poland both ended goalless, however the goals reappeared in the later game between France and Australia. Australia look as though they were set to cause a second upset of the day, firing ahead within the first minutes, but Giroud, Mbappe and Rabiot made sure that France got off to a winning start in the tournament. The game finished 4-1.

Tomorrow, fans are looking forward to another packed day of matches including Morocco v Croatia, Germany v Japan, Spain v Costa Rica and Belgium v Canada.

Follow the latest in our live blog, including reports from our football reporter Rahman Osman in Qatar...

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Wales fans complain of having rainbow hats confiscated

Wales’ Rainbow Wall, a group of LGBTQ+ supporters, have tweeted that female supporters wearing rainbow bucket hats have had them confiscated.

In a tweet posted this evening prior to the USA match the group said: “Our rainbow bucket hat. We are so proud of them, but news on the ground tonight is our welsh female supporters wearing them in #Qatar are having them taken off them, Not the men, just Women.

Former Wales captain Laura McAllister said she was refused entry to the stadium in Qatar with her rainbow bucket hat.

McAllister said: “Clearly, I wasn't going to take my hat off”, adding, “There's not much point in having principles if you're willing to give them up the moment someone challenges you.”

Virgil van Dijk defends not wearing rainbow armband

Virgil van Dijk has hit back at claims the Netherlands and other countries have been spineless in the anti-discrimination armband controversy. The Dutch were one of seven European nations, also including England and Wales, who planned to have their captains wearing the rainbow-coloured ‘OneLove’ armband at the World Cup.

The band is part of a year-long campaign but sent out an especially significant message in Qatar, a country which criminalises same-sex relationships. However, the seven countries dropped their plans after tournament organisers FIFA threatened them with sporting sanctions including yellow cards for the captains if the bands were worn, instructing teams to wear a FIFA-approved ‘no discrimination’ band instead.

Oranje skipper Van Dijk told Dutch broadcaster NOS: “I play in a position where a yellow card is not useful. I became a football player and I want to play these kind of tournaments.

“There are people who say we don’t have a backbone, but that’s not how it works,” the Liverpool defender added. “We just want to play football. I would have loved to play with that band, but not at the expense of a yellow card.”

Virgil van Dijk of Netherlands during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group A match between Senegal and Netherlands (Getty Images)

Why so many empty seats?

If you’ve been watching the World Cup so far, you’ll have noticed the high numbers of empty seats. The chief executive of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 claimed the country was “gripped by football fever” following Sunday’s opening ceremony but around a third of seats appeared unoccupied throughout Senegal’s match against the Netherlands at Al Thumama Stadium.

Empty seats are seen after ticketing problems affected England’s match with Iran at Khalifa International Stadium (Getty Images)

FIFA did not immediately know why this was the case, but it is understood problems with the ticketing app which affected England fans gaining entry to the match against Iran also occurred at the Senegal-Netherlands match. At the England match at the Khalifa Stadium, thousands of empty seats could be seen at kick-off but the venue did gradually fill up.

The official attendance of 41,721 for the Senegal match raised eyebrows as well, with the venue listed as having a 40,000 capacity in the official pre-tournament media guide. However, the final capacity during event mode is higher for each of the eight stadia – with Al Thumama now able to hold 44,400 according to FIFA. However, that still did not explain the empty seats which could be seen.

There was similar confusion on Sunday night when the official attendance at Al Bayt Stadium was over 67,000, with the media guide stating capacity was 60,000. That stadium in Al Khor was virtually empty by full-time as hosts Qatar succumbed to a 2-0 defeat to Ecuador.

FIFA says almost three million tickets have been sold for the finals altogether.

Watch our live World Cup show at 11am

You can keep in touch with all the action right from Qatar on NationalWorld TV, with their daily live show at 11am.

Join Daniel Wales and Charles Hague Jones, plus special guests, each weekday as they debate the biggest talking points and discuss everything going on with life in Qatar.

Today the pair will be joined England fan ‘Paul, the Tango man’ who was at yesterday’s opening encounter.

Tune in via NationalWorld TV.

Argentina off to a flyer against Saudi Arabia

Argentina area already a goal up against Saudi Arabia, and it’s that man Lionel Messi. The PSG star converted from the penalty spot in the ninth minute after a foul in the box.

Messi nonchalantly rolled his penalty in, and it’s an uphill struggle for Saudi Arabia now.

Lionel Messi of Argentina (Getty Images)

Southgate’s ‘concern’ over armband threat

England manager Gareth Southgate says the failure to secure FIFA approval for Harry Kane to wear the ‘OneLove’ captain’s armband prior to the match against Iran had been a concern to him, and admits there are “lessons to be learned” from the controversy.

Southgate said after the win over Iran he understood FIFA had to be careful about setting a precedent, and told talkSPORT’s World Cup daily podcast: “I was a bit concerned that approval hadn’t been given and I think there are lessons to be learned from that, if I’m honest.

“But we had to focus on the football and other people had to do that talking overnight and (on Sunday and Monday morning).

“For me I didn’t want anything distracting the players. There’s been a huge amount of talk around us, which is understandable.

“If we can help raise awareness of other issues then we want to do that and we will always try to do that, but of course we’re here to try and take our supporters on a great journey again.”

Argentina in deep trouble

Lionel Messi’s Argentina could be set for an early exit from the tournament. They’re currently trailing Saudi Arabia 2-1 with just a few minutes of injury time to play.

Saudi Arabia pull off a huge World Cup shock

Saudi Arabia, ranked outside the world’s top 50, have beaten one of the tournament favourites in Argentina.

Argentina’s stars like Lionel Messi and Angel di Maria looked confused and dejected at the full time whistle after the seismic 2-1 defeat.

Lionel Messi of Argentina shows dejection during the match between Argentina and Saudi Arabia (Getty Images)

The Saudi players, meanwhile, ran towards their jubilant fans.

Salem Al Dawsari’s stunner sealed an extraordinary Saudi Arabia comeback win in a breathless clash that ranks among the greatest upsets in World Cup history.

La Albiceleste kicked off their quest for glory in Qatar at the Lusail Stadium, where many had predicted their star skipper Messi could be lifting the trophy aloft on 18 December.

The Gulf state had won only three of their previous 16 matches on the world stage and looked set for another defeat when Messi scored a 10th minute penalty. The 35-year-old became only the fifth player to score at a four World Cups, but this was not his or Argentina’s day as their 36-match unbeaten run came to a crashing end.

Lionel Scaloni’s men saw three first-half goals ruled out for offside and a pair of Saudi screamers turned the game on its head within eight minutes of the second half getting under way. Al Shehri scored a fine low strike with the first shot of the game by Herve Renard’s side, who went ahead when Al Dawsari produced the kind of goal Messi would be proud of.

Saudi Arabia – cheered by their raucous support – dug deep from that point, throwing themselves in front of everything and goalkeeper Mohammed Al Owais proved an inspired last line as they saw out an unforgettable victory.

World Cup 2022 TV schedule in full

Now that the tournament’s under way, you may have found yourself hopping between the BBC and ITV - and frequently landing on a daytime TV show or soap opera by mistake.

So if you’re looking to plan your viewing, here’s the full World Cup 2022 TV schedule for UK viewers.

Next up: Mexico vs Poland

Denmark and Tunisia played out goalless, albeit it entertaining, draw in the second match of the day. Now all eyes are turning towards Doha, where Mexico take on Poland in Group C.

With Argentina losing to Saudi Arabia, the group has been blown wide open - it’s there for the taking.

Mexico and Poland have faced each other a handful of times over the years, mainly in international friendlies. Their one World Cup meeting came back in 1978, where the Poles earned a 3-1 win.

At the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Mexico got out of their group at the expense of Germany who finished bottom. They went out in the round of 16, however, losing to Brazil. Poland had a World Cup to forget, finishing bottom of Group H after losing their opening two matches to Senegal and Colombia respectively.

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