The Saudi Arabia team was criticized by some many football lovers all over the world after they were defeated they were thrashed 5-0 by Russia on Thursday evening at the Luzhniki Stadium.
Two goals from Denis Cheryshev, one each by Yuri Gazinskiy, Artem Dzyuba and Aleksandr Golovin gave the hosts a deserved victory over Saudi.
Speaking as an analyst on SuperSport following the match, Okocha, who represented Nigeria at 1994,1998 and 2002 World Cup, believes the Saudi were whipped by Russia because of the standard of their domestic league.
According to report on Daily Post former Nigerian captain, Austin Okocha said,
”Deservedly, they were beaten 5-0, I think they exposed the standard that they are playing at, the level of their league,” Okocha said.
”If you are not playing competitive football week in, week out, you will struggle, you will get exposed.
”Their tactical discipline was nowhere to be found, their understanding of how to defend wasn’t there. In as much as I was surprised, I am glad that we’ve gotten off to a great start,” he said.
The Russian team defeated their opponent Saudi Arabia in front of an ecstatic crowd in Moscow after President Vladimir Putin officially declared the tournament open.
This is really a good start for the host country and their fans hope they continue at this pace and qualify from the group stage.
Starting line-ups for the opening match of the World Cup between hosts Russia and Saudi Arabia in Group A in Moscow yesterday.
Igor Akinfeev (capt), Mario Fernandes, Ilya Kupetov, Sergey Ignashevich, Iury Gazinsky, Alan Dzagoev, Roman Zobnin, Aleksandr Golovin, Yury Zhirkov, Alexander Samedov, Fedor Smolov
Coach: Stanislav Cherchesov (RUS)
Abdullah Al-Muaiouf, Osama Hawsawi (capt), Omar Hawsawi, Mohammed Al-Burayk, Yasser Al-Shahrani, Salman Al-Faraj, Yahia Al-Shehri, Abdullah Otayf, Taiseer Al-Jassam, Salem Al-Dawsari, Mohammed Al-Sahlawi
Coach: Juan Antonio Pizzi (ESP)
Referee: Nestor Pitana (ARG)