Moscow, June 15 (IANS) Saudi Arabia coach Juan Antonio Pizzi played down suggestions that his position is under threat after a 0-5 loss to Russia in the opening match of the FIFA World Cup.
Saudi Arabia have historically fired coaches on a regular basis and have had five different people at the helm since 2013, reports Xinhua news agency.
At the 1998 World Cup in France, the Saudi FA sacked Carlos Alberto Parreira mid-tournament, four years after he guided Brazil to football’s ultimate prize in the US.
“I have the philosophy that in my job I always try to do my best,” Pizzi told a press conference after the match at Luzhniki Stadium on Thursday.
“I can’t worry about decisions that are out of my control. I will continue working as I am.”
He said the team should not be judged on the performance against Russia and predicted a better showing against Uruguay next Wednesday.
“We need to recover, try to forget this shameful situation and start thinking about the next match,” the Argentine said. “I believe in the players and I believe that we will perform better in the next match.
“I have seen progress since we started working together. And of course today’s game is not an accurate gauge. We didn’t play as we planned. We can improve and we will improve but it will take us some time to do so. What we have to do is prepare for the next game.”