Saudi Arabia Draws Outrage After Failing to Participate in Moment of Silence Before Match
The Australian team paused to remember victims of the London attack.
The Australian national soccer team stood arm-in-arm for a moment of silence at the Adelaide Oval Thursday, but their opponents, the Saudi Arabian team, were players warming up across the field and getting into formation for the game.
"Not participating in minutes silence is disgusting,” one outraged fan tweeted.
"Saudi players wandering around like they don't give a s***," wrote another.
An additional fan called for the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to discipline the Saudi team over their "clear lack of respect shown prior to kick-off."
The Football Federation Australia (FFA), which is the country’s soccer governing body, said the Saudis knew there would be a moment of silence prior to kick-off.
“The FFA was further advised by Saudi team officials that this tradition was not in keeping with Saudi culture and they would move to their side of the field and respect our custom whilst taking their own positions on the field,” The FFA said in a statement.
The game, which was a World Cup qualifying match for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, saw Australia beat the Saudis 3-2.
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