Saudi Arabia Manager Praises ‘Enormous’ Improvement But Rues Defeat Against Uruguay

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Saudi Arabia boss Juan Antonio Pizzi was proud of his team’s efforts on Wednesday when they faced Uruguay, but the Argentina-born coach was left disappointed as Luis Suárez proved to be the difference in Rostov.

The Green Falcons will battle it out with Egypt to avoid finishing bottom of Group A, while Uruguay takes on Russia in the fight for top spot ahead of the knockout stages of the competition.

“We had a lot of ball possession and were able to impose our style of play and distribution,” Pizzi said after their defeat, quoted by Arab News

“We conceded a goal from a random play and didn’t have the weapons or tools to try to equalize. We kept the ball well and weren’t really troubled defensively, but lacked that ability to score.

“This is our weakness. We have good ball possession, but no effectiveness. We lack the depth and skill required to win these games.

“We have that deficiency and have looked for solutions, but we haven’t quite come up with one yet. But that is one of the reasons great forwards are in high demand and are the elite players in world football.”

Pizzi added that Saudi Arabia’s improvement from their humbling defeat against Russia on the opening day was ‘enormous’, but the Spaniard was reluctant to solely blame the pressure of kicking off at a World Cup.

“The only way to compete at this level is to play at the level we did here. And even then it was not enough to even get a draw,” he said. “Undoubtedly there were other factors aside from the pressure of playing in the opening game that made a difference, but it’s true that the difference was enormous.”

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