During a World Cup, matches follow each other in rapid succession, which sometimes creates dilemmas. Poland-Saudi Arabia is typically such a match that can cause doubt. Because on paper, Poland (number 26 in the world rankings) seems clear favourite against Saudi Arabia (number 51). But then again, what did the paper say about Argentina and Saudi Arabia? The Saudi’s mega-stunt turned the World Cup on its head. Was Argentina just really bad, or is Saudi Arabia a much stronger team than people think? Whoever knows the answer should definitely bet on this pool match in Group C.
Prediction Poland – Saudi Arabia
The paper is still not convinced of Saudi Arabia’s qualities. Anyone who thinks the team wins against Poland and qualifies directly for the eighth finals could face a substantial fee of 4.75 times the stake for doing so. At the same time, a Polish win yields only 1.75 times the stake. So the bookies are not expecting another Saudi victory. Thanks to the stunt against Argentina, a win is not necessary for Saudi Arabia either. That a win is not necessary cannot be said of Poland. The scoreless draw against Mexico means Poland must win against Saudi Arabia to keep sight of the next round.
Poland latest news and statistics
After the difficult encounter with Mexico, in which star player Lewandowski failed from 11 metres, the Poles have no margin for error. Against Saudi Arabia, on paper the weakest team in the pool, only victory counts. Poland should certainly be considered capable of that. Coach Czesław Michniewicz can effortlessly field 11 players from top European leagues, and that still leaves quality on the bench. Familiar names include Napoli midfielder Piotr Zielinski and Aston Villa defender Jan Bednarek, in addition to the already mentioned Robert Lewandowski. Goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny (Juventus), midfielder Nicola Zalewski (AS Roma) and old friend (ex-Ajax) Arkadiusz Milik also deserve a mention. Against Saudi Arabia, Poland can throw off all shyness and the team knows what to do.
Saudi Arabia latest news and statistics
Those who do not immediately have names come to mind when thinking of Saudi Arabia will be forgiven. French coach Hervé Renard’s team has no familiar names. Striker Firas Al-Buraikan and winger Sultan Al-Ghannam come closest to star player status. Although last Tuesday’s goal scorers Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari naturally also count as national heroes in the country whose king promptly gave everyone a day off on Wednesday to celebrate the spectacular win against Argentina. The Saudi team’s players play almost exclusively in their own league, with Al-Hilal as the court supplier. The mood is good, knowing that a result against Poland brings the Saudis very close to the second round. The country managed that only once before, in 1994.
Poland – Saudi Arabia previous encounters
Previous encounters between Poland and Saudi Arabia are scarce; only four times previously this match has been played. In those four encounters – all friendly – Poland took the full spoils. Four wins, though usually with minimal difference. The last time the two countries met was back in 2006. Then Poland won 2-1.
Poland – Saudi Arabia: Betting Tip & Odds
It sits well with Saudi Arabia that knows that even with a (handsome) draw, the prospect of reaching the next round remains crisp. That’s why we think the Saudis will keep it close and create another surprise, this time with a draw against Poland.
- Tip: Saudi Arabia holds Poland to a draw
- Odds: 12/5 at bookmaker NetBet
- Risk rating: High
- Recommended stake: 4/10