FIFA World Cup 2022: Mexico and Poland fans celebrate Argentina’s defeat

Fans from Mexico and Poland, who were a tad worried ahead of Tuesday’s Group C opener between Argentina and Saudi Arabia, were over the moon after Lionel Messi & Co went down 1-2 in one of the biggest shocks in the history of the FIFA World Cup. 

“Argentina are the toughest team in our group and among the favourites not just to qualify for the next round, but to possibly go on and win the World Cup. But this defeat has now given us a good chance to go through to the Round of 16,” Mexican fan Rodrygo Bonelli, 26, who is here to watch the World Cup with his mother, Ana, 59, told mid-day on Tuesday.

Poland’s Jakub Kowalski (left) with friends at the Al-Bidda fab park in Doha on Tuesday

To complicate matters in Group C, Poland and Mexico played out a goalless draw later the same day, with their star striker Robert Lewandowski seeing his second half penalty (58th minute) saved by Mexico’s veteran goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa, 37. Incidentally, Lewandowski and Ochoa both picked the same side, and the custodian’s brilliant diving effort drew cheers of the Mexican fans, who had overshadowed their Polish counterparts in numbers at the 40,000-capacity Stadium 974. 

Poland fans were disappointed about the missed penalty, but weren’t too unhappy with the result. “The draw means one point to both teams so we have opened our account at the World Cup. Also, if we can go on to beat Saudi Arabia and then even draw against Argentina, we will have five points, and can qualify for the next round,” said an excited Jakub Kowalski, who hails from Warsaw. Interestingly, the Mexican fans also believe that their team can register a win and a draw in their remaining two group matches and progress. 

Also Read: FIFA World Cup 2022: No cheers with beers!

However, Argentine coach Lionel Scaloni has other ideas. He insisted his team will go through despite the early setback. “It’s a sad day today, but fortunately, we have two group games remaining and we will do it,” he said. 

There may not have been a Group of Death to begin with at this World Cup, but the current scenario in Group C seems to have given birth to one. 

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