Thursday September 28, 2023

Saudi Arabia Overcame $637M Disparity in World Cup Upset

  • Eleven Argentina players individually have higher market values than Saudi Arabia's entire squad.
  • KSA's +1800 odds before the match’s start made them the longest underdog to ever win a World Cup match.
Saudi Arabia team celebrates after beating Argentina in World Cup match
Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports
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Saudi Arabia’s massive 2-1 victory over Argentina in Group C’s opening match on Tuesday may go down as one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history.

Per Transfermarkt, the cumulative market value for Saudi Arabia’s squad is $25.9 million — 70th in the world and well behind many teams that didn’t even qualify for the tournament.

Comparatively, Argentina’s team is valued at $663.2 million — seventh in the world.

In fact, there are 11 players on the squad that individually have higher market values than KSA’s entire team — including Lautaro Martinez ($77.1M), Cristian Romero ($56.5M), and the legendary Lionel Messi ($51.4M).

The upset was also historic from a betting perspective.

Per BetMGM, Saudi Arabia’s +1800 odds before the match’s start made them the longest underdog to ever win a World Cup match.

Additionally, Argentina were the most bet-on team to win the entire tournament at DraftKings with 25% of the handle. The nation’s odds to win the whole thing dropped from +500 to +750 after the loss.

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The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia clearly sees it as a cause for celebration.

The country has declared Wednesday a national holiday, giving public and private sector employees the day off from work and closing schools.

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