Saudi Arabia 2-1 Egypt: Green Falcons Snatch Consolation Victory

Saudi Arabia 2-1 Egypt: Green Falcons Snatch Consolation Victory

Maxwell Hogg
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That's all from me today! Be sure to check back with us for all the post game coverage, such as reports and analysis. We have more games coming up this evening as well, so be sure to come back and follow along with VAVEL UK. This has been Maxwell Hogg, enjoy the rest of the games today!

It was World Cup to forget for Egypt as they were viewed as an underdog who could make noise in this tournament. Disappointingly, the Pharaohs never got fully running and will be going home from their third World Cup without a victory.

Both these sides were eliminated coming into the match, but it is Saudi Arabia that get to go home with their heads held high with a consolation victory. 

FT: No time for an Egypt rebuttal. The whistle sounds and Saudi Arabia have come from behind in the final game of Group A to steal a victory.

90+5' GOAL! Saudi Arabia play the ball into the box, and the ball is flicked to Salem who finishes from an acute angle to take the lead in the dying minutes of the game.

90+4' Saudi Arabia trying to work the ball up the field in what will most likely be their final possession of this World Cup.

90+3' Both sides playing a more direct passing game, trying to score with the time remaining. Warda tries to find a marauding Kahraba at the back post, but the cross is overhead.

90' The board goes up and we will have four minutes of stoppage time. Can either side find the breakthrough?

89' Egypt defend well and break forward through Salah. He plays Warda on the wing and receives the ball back at the top of the box. Even with plenty of players forward, Egypt can't find the last pass to break the Saudi defense as the danger is cleared.

87' The Green Falcons pump the ball back into the box, and Hussain tries to volley it. But his effort goes high over the bar, a common theme today as accuracy has gone out the window.

86' Saudi Arabia earn another free kick, this one on the left side of the box. Fathy is shown a yellow card for the foul. Egypt struggle against the cross but clear that one well. 

84' Salah plays the ball to Said who is one on one with the keeper, but he can't beat him as he turns the ball wide. Strange decision by the assistant referee to not call offside and Salah was at least a couple yards behind the last defender.

82' A long ball forward eludes the Egyptian defense and finds Salem, but he can only tap it back across the face of goal where El Hadary is alert and gathers.

81' The free kick is hit right into the mass of players and is cleared easily, really poor set piece by Saudi Arabia. Trezeguet comes off after the kick for Kahraba

79' Saudi Arabia have a free kick outside the top of the box, and Fahad makes way for Yahya Al-Shehri.

78' The ball is chipped to the backlist by Salah, but can't find a teammate to nod home. Suddenly it is all Egypt with Saudi Arabia pegged back trying to hold on. 

77' Salah breaks forward and is taken down in the box legally. He gets right up to get in the play, and Warda's shot is on goal but deflects behind for the corner.

75' Egypt have a nice spell of possession around the Saudi Arabia box, but the referee gets in the way and breaks up a pass to the top of the box. 

74' Salman steps to the free kick and has a go at goal, but the shot doesn't trouble El Hadary as it sails high above the goal.

73' Fathy makes a dangerous pass across the middle that is intercepted. Saudi Arabia is nearly on the break, but Fathy commits the foul to stop the attack.

71' Saudi Arabia has the shot advantage here so far, outshooting the Pharaohs 17 to 6. It has been a dominant performance by them in the second half.

70' Another save! The corner is perfect to the back post and El Hadary makes an incredible reflex save to deny Saudi Arabia once again.

69' Hussain Al-Mogahwi goes close for Saudi Arabia with a thumping header, but El Hadary makes the save.

67' Saudi Arabia has kicked this game into another gear and Egypt hasn't been able to keep up. After a more methodical, slower approach in the first half, the Green Falcons have ran circles around Egypt so far.

66' Salman cuts into the box, but Gabr steps up to clear the ball. Gabr picks up a knock in the aftermath in a collision with Salman, but he is good to go on.

65' Play continues briefly until the next dead ball where Saudi Arabia introduce Muhannad Assiri for Hattan Bahebri.

64' Marwan Mohsen has been silent today and now makes way for Ramadan Sobhi.

63' Salah is through on goal, but the ball is too far ahead, even for his pace. Al-Mosailem comes out and collects before Salah can arrive.

61' Saudi Arabia work their way into the ball and a brilliant one-two between Salman and Salem gives Salem a great chance, but Hegazy does well with his last second tackle to deny the goal.

60' Anytime Egypt come onto possession, they are just incapable of completing a pass up field. Hegazy stops a Saudi Arabian surge forward, but swiftly gives possession right back after a horrendous pass attempt.

57' A long ball over the top finds Trezeguet who makes great contact with his head, but can't turn the ball on target as Al Mosailem was rooted in place.

56' Warda earns a free kick on the right side of the box after being dragged down by Salman. Salah's resulting free kick is poor and fails to beat the first defender.

54' Saudi Arabia continue to mount pressure on the Egypt goal. They have had a grip on this game the entire second half. Egypt can't get anything going as they continuously gift away possession.

52' Long ball nearly finds Salman on the left flank, but Fathy does well to shepherd him off the ball and clear the danger. Salah tries to break the other way, but has no options to help as he concedes possession. 

51' Salman goes down in the box after a tackle by Fathy, but the referee motions for him to get up and resume play. A third penalty against Egypt would be cruel.

50' Egypt are defending well, but are committing too many players back. There aren't enough Egypt players up field to play the ball to or clear to as Saudi Arabia build pressure.

48' Salem sends a low, whipped cross into the box that just narrowly misses the green shirts gather. Saudi Arabia have certainly started this half on the front foot.

2H: Amr Warda comes on for Said as Saudi Arabia get us started from the kick off.

It's currently anybody's game right now, but Egypt look the better side. They've had better looks in the box, more advantages on the break, and have been resolute in defense. While the Saudi Arabians have had more of the ball, Egypt has looked far better in the less possession they have had.

Salah should have made it 2-0 earlier on but has so far been on fire for Egypt, giving the Saudi defense not a moments rest. His presence has made it easier for Trezeguet to operate down the left side, and I believe it's this partnership that will be key for Egypt in the second half.

Even though he was beaten on the second penalty, El-Hadary will no doubt go down in Egyptian folklore after his penalty save while being the oldest player in World Cup history. Just incredible.

HT: The halftime whistle blows shortly after and we head into the break with it all level at 1-1. Its been an exciting game that has seen both sides break and attack at full speed. Will there be a winner in the second half?

45+5' GOAL! The referee reviews the penalty and confirms it with a yellow card for Gabr. Salman steps to the spot this time and beats El-Hadary to tie the game up right before halftime.

45+2' PENALTY Saudi Arabia earn another penalty as Ali Gabr is judged to have dragged Fahad down in the box. The replay shows a considerably soft foul for the penalty, and now we wait for the confirmation from VAR.

45' Mohamed Elneny tries to play a long ball for Trezeguet, but is too far for him to reach. The board goes up and we will have three minutes of stoppage time.

44' Pressure building on Saudi Arabia as Egypt works their way back up the pitch. The overlapping runs by the Pharaohs today have been brilliant and has been punishing the open Saudi defense.

42' El-Hadary is down receiving treatment as we head into the end of the half. Looks like a leg injury, but he is back on his feet and able to continue.

41' Saudi Arabia goes close again, but there are too many bodies in the box and multiple shots collide with players before being cleared by the Egyptian defense.

40' SAVE! 45-year-old El-Hadary saves the penalty, pushing the shot onto the crossbar. Brilliant save by the oldest player in World Cup history.

39' PENALTY! Ahmed Fathy handles the ball in the box trying to stop a Yasser cross into the box. Fahad Al-Muwallad steps up to take.

37' The ball is squared back to Salman Al-Faraj uncontested at the top of the box. His shot is on target, but Hegazy does well to block, denying the equalizer.

36' Saudi Arabia is passing around the back, trying to slow this match down as they pick out their opportunities. 

34' Trezeguet gets another chance breaking down the wing once more. He beats his defender cutting into the box, but his curling effort goes just wide once more. He is starting to get frustrated as he feels he should have scored at least one of those opportunities.

33' Trezeguet plays the ball to the center of the pitch to Salah who juggles the ball before flicking it back into the path of Trezeguet. He had more time than he thought as he released a curling first time volley that isn't too far off frame.

31' A Saudi Arabian corner falls to the feet of a green jersey, but can't settle his feet, opting to send the ball back across goal. The ball finds no one and the danger is cleared by Egypt.

30' Yasser marauds forward once again and finds the ball in space at the top of the box, but his shot is once again poor and flies over the crossbar.

29' Egypt earn a free kick on the edge of the Saudi Arabia box after Osama takes down Trezeguet. Said takes the free kick, but his cross is an accidental shot right at Al-Mosailem.

25' Egypt are starting to build some possession of their own, but keep conceding the ball in the midfield under little pressure as Saudi Arabia look for an equalizer.

24' Salah was in on goal once more for a one-on-one with the keeper, and tried to chip the keeper once more. He got the ball over the keeper, but couldn't keep it on target.

22' GOAL! Abdullah Said steals possession in midfield and plays a  long ball forward for Salah. He takes one touch before lifting the ball over Yasser Al-Mosailem for the opening goal.

19' Mohamed Abdelshafy skips past a Saudi shirt and tries to play Salah on goal, but he is offside by about four whole strides. Really poor timing on the run by Salah.

18' Salah tries to break down the side, but Motaz Hawsawi is able to keep up with his pace stride for stride and clear the ball. Incredibly done by him.

17' This game is starting to open up with both sides consistently on the break. Only Saudi Arabia has been able to hold onto possession as they try to work their offense.

16' Salah tries to send another ball in the box, but there aren't enough Egyptian shirts to attack the ball. Salah needs to think about trying to work the ball into the box if he is to really make an impact today.

14' Osama Hawsawi gifts possession to Egypt, but they can't do well with their advantage and turn the ball over. Salem breaks down the middle and beats a handful of defenders, but his early shot is nowhere near the target.

12' Saudi Arabia has seen most of the possession so far, holding onto the ball better in midfield. Still no clear cut chances for either side as Salem Al-Dawsari watches his long range effort sail above the bar.

10' Trezeguet shows his pace to get on the end of a long ball to the corner. He sends a low cross into the box, but the ball is behind Salah and Saudi Arabia break down the other end of the pitch.

9' The corner is sent into a dangerous area, but Ahmed Hegazy rises tallest to clear the danger.

8' Saudi Arabia does well to absorb pressure from Egypt before sending Yasser Al-Shahrani down the wing. He plays another one-two before sending his cross in. There is no green shirts to get on the end of it, but Saudi Arabia earns a corner for their trouble.

5' Salah tries to curl a ball to the back post for Mahmoud "Trezeguet" Hassan, but the Saudi defense reacts accordingly. Shortly after, Salah nearly picks off a back pass. Already making more of an impact than he did against Russia.

3' Hussain Al-Mogawhi has a go at goal, but his shot is well wide, not troubling El Hadary at all. Goal kick Egypt.

2' A long ball forward by Saudi Arabia finds no one and El Hadary comes out to collect uncontested.

KO: Egypt gets us started here and the final game of Group A is underway!

El Hadary also gets the captain's armband today ahead of his record breaking performance today. The captains shake hands and exchange banners. Kick-off is only a few moments away.

We are just 30 minutes away from kickoff ahead of what is surely to be an entertaining match at the bottom of Group A. Go handle any other business you may have this afternoon, but make sure you are back in time to follow along all with all the action!

Beyond the goalkeeping changes and Motaz's inclusion, both sides are going with fairly unchanged lineups as they stick to their guns in hopes of going home with their heads held high.

For Saudi Arabia, they have made a change in goal today and have Motaz Hawsawi is included in today's lineup. Perhaps some tweaking is what Saudi Arabia needs to get their team going.

On the other end of the pitch, Essam El Hadary gets the start in goal. He is the team's oldest player at 45 and will become the oldest person to play in a World Cup match today.

Egypt's lineup was posted twice today in rapid succession, but the first lineup the Egyptian FA shared was one with Salah in the lineup at all. Not even a space on the bench. Before there was any time to react, the lineup was taken down and the new one posted featured Salah. Surely just a mistake, but will add to the flames of Salah's falling out with the Egyptian FA.

Despite the recent controversy, Salah starts today in Egypt's World Cup finale as they search for their first ever World Cup win.

Saudi Arabia Substitutions: Al-Mayouf, Mansoor, Yahya, Al-Sahlawi, Abdulmalek, Kanno, Al-Khaibari, Muhannad, Al-Owais

Saudi Arabia Starting XI: Almosailem; Osama, Alburayak, Yasser, Motaz; Salman, Hatan, Otayf, Hussain, Salem; Fahad

Egypt Substitutions: Elmohamady, Morsy, Kahraba, Ashraf, Sobhi, Hamdi, Ekramy, Shikabala, Samir, Warda, El-Shenawy

Egypt Starting XI: El Hadary; Fathy, Gabr, Hegazy, Abdelshafy; Elneny, Hamed, Salah, Said, Trezeguet; Mohsen

As we get closer to kick off, the team news is starting to come in. Let's look at today's lineups.

Team news will come an hour before kick-off but in the meantime make sure you follow us @VAVEL to keep up with all the comings and goings of the 2018 World Cup.

One to watch: Fahad Al-Muwallad is one of Saudi Arabia's brightest stars. While not having many chances in Spain with Levante, the young winger has looked promising in the striker role for Saudi Arabia so far in the tournament. The only issue is he doesn't see much of the ball, and hasn't been given many opportunities or chances to capitalize on. Saudi Arabia will look to get the most out of him in this consolation matchup.

One to watch: Mohammed Salah remains the main man for Egypt. He really struggled last time out against Russia, seeing very little of the ball in the first half as he was effectively shut down. He did well to earn a late penalty and convert, but the Liverpool man will need to do better and influence the game is Egypt want to go home with their first World Cup victory.

Saudi Arabia's last World cup victory came in 1994 when they advanced to the knockout rounds, but the stakes may be higher for the Egyptians in this matchup, as they have never won a game at the World Cup. 

Neither side looked terrible against Uruguay, the supposed favorites of the group, and performed above expectations. Both the Egypt and Saudi Arabia defense looked strong and resolute against a lineup featuring Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani. Defense won't be a concern in this matchup. It will be the side that can get going offensively that will take home the points.

The Pharaohs were able to score against Russia through a Mohamed Salah penalty, but they were ultimately swept aside by the hosts pressure and quality in their 3-1 loss than eliminated them from the tournament. It was also only the third multi-goal deficit loss under Hector Cuper

Saudi Arabia has been one of the weaker sides this tournament, struggling to get a single goal so far. Juan Antonio Pizzi's men have plenty to be proud of in their matchup against Uruguay that saw them the better side in possession, but will have to figure out how to build on the positives and turn them into goals.

Both sides come in to this matchup without a victory and will be looking to make some World Cup memories on their way out the door. Both Egypt and Saudi Arabia narrowly fell to Uruguay and suffered massive defeats to the hosts Russia, but this game offers the opportunity for either side to go home with their heads held high.

Good evening everyone and welcome to our coverage of today's Group A finale. Saudi Arabia take on Egypt in a battle of two winless sides. I'm Maxwell Hogg with VAVEL UK and we'll be taking you through the events with minute-by-minute commentary. We’ll have all the latest updates and team news  an hour prior to kick off, so follow our updates throughout.