Pizzi waits to learn Saudi Arabia future

It remains to be seen if a winning end to a disappointing World Cup campaign is enough for Juan Antonio Pizzi to keep his Saudi Arabia job.

Saudi Arabia came from behind to beat fellow eliminated side Egypt in Volgograd on Monday.   -  AFP

Juan Antonio Pizzi says his future is in the hands of the Saudi Arabian Football Federation after his team's swift exit from the World Cup was followed by a consolation victory over Egypt.

Saudi Arabia was thrashed 5-0 by host Russia in its opening match, a baptism of fire for Pizzi in his first competitive game in charge.

The Spanish coach was appointed in November, succeeding Edgardo Bauza, who only lasted a month after replacing Bert van Marwijk, the man who orchestrated the team's successful qualification campaign.

Saudi Arabia produced an improved performance but could not avoid a 1-0 loss to Uruguay in the second match, ruling it out of contention to progress to the round of 16.

It came from behind to beat fellow eliminated side Egypt in Volgograd on Monday, but Pizzi does not know if that morale-boosting win will be enough to see him keep his job. 

"The association will have to decide what they're going to do," he told a news conference. 

"It doesn't depend on myself so we'll see what happens over the next few days. 

"We need to keep working and we need to be patient. We need to support the team, everything needs time. 

"Processes need learning so we need patience while we aim for improvement and development. I would like for the Saudi people to be happy with the game and I hope they will enjoy our victory."

'Didn't expect the result against Russia'

Pizzi acknowledged the scale of the team's defeat in the tournament's opening match in Moscow came as a nasty surprise. 

"We were not expecting the result against Russia – we had different expectations," he said.

"There were certain factors that we could not control, but we thought we would be able to adapt. 

"It was a very important game for us as it's a privilege to play the first game at the World Cup – unfortunately things didn't go as planned and we weren't able to overcome adversity. 

"What we try to do is make players feel comfortable and want them to enjoy and play freely. 

"We know we have certain weaknesses."

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