Saudi Arabia press conference: Bert van Marwijk confident of World Cup Qualification

FOR a proud footballing nation, this is a nervously exciting moment for Saudi Arabia.

So much focus has been on Australia getting the Road to Russia back on track but for the Middle East nation, last seen at the finals in 2006, the wait is excruciating.

Journalists literally thanked their boss Bert van Marwijk at the pre match press conference for steering the side three points clear of Australia at this point in World Cup Qualifying.

“You don’t have to thank me; you can thank me when we’re qualified,” he snapped coolly in a major assumption given how tight the race is in this qualifying pool.

But that mood – in a country that has seen 19 bosses in the time Australia has had five – just re-enforces the context of this game, with the hosts three points in arrears of Thursday’s opponent, that isn’t necessarily appreciated by the wider sporting public in Australia.

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