Laura Woods explains Saudi national anthem interruption before Argentina World Cup tie


ITV host Laura Woods has explained the disruption to Saudi Arabia’s national anthem before their World Cup clash with Argentina on Tuesday. The broadcast was temporarily interrupted before kick off, with much of the anthem missed by supporters watching from home. 

Argentina and Saudi Arabia lined up at the colossal Lusail Stadium before getting their respective World Cup bids underway. The Albiceleste went into the tournament among the favourites while the Saudis were expected to have a tough time making out of the group. 

With nerves building, Argentina’s national anthem went without a hitch but much of Saudi Arabia’s was missed by ITV as the picture cut out completely, displaying an error message on-screen. At half-time, Woods explained that the issue was experienced by all broadcasters worldwide. 

“You may have noticed as well, a little bit of break up during the Saudi Arabia national anthem,” she explained while live on ITV. “It was a world feed issue, experienced by all the broadcasters around the world that were taking that feed.”

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The Saudis held on until full-time to spark jubilant scenes inside the Lusail Stadium, consigning Argentina to one of the most shocking defeats in World Cup history. After the final whistle, Graeme Souness told ITV: “[Argentina] haven’t got another gear, not on that performance. 

“They’re the last team I would’ve thought to get rolled over in a physical encounter. If you’re Saudi Arabia coming into this match, you’re saying to your players that we can’t take them on in a nice, passing game of football and we have to be aggressive. Boy, were they aggressive.

“Holding a high line carries its risks but if you want to be an aggressive team, the back four have to be up near the half-way line. The history of Argentinian football is super aggressive with great technique. I didn’t see any of that today. 

“When I played against Argentina, I never got an easy encounter. They’d come back for more time and time again. That was a shadow of any Argentinian team I’ve ever seen. They were a shadow today.”


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