Sunday, February 5 2023

AL RAYYAN, Qatar (AP) — Finally!

Robert Lewandowski at last scored a goal in a World Cup match on Saturday, helping Poland beat Saudi Arabia 2-0 and boosting his team’s chances of reaching the knockout stages.

Lewandowski shed tears after scoring in the 82nd minute. He raced toward the corner with his arms outstretched, then stayed slumped on the field as teammates rushed to congratulate him. He got up, rubbed his face, and blew a kiss to the crowd.

Arguably one of the best forwards in the world, Lewandowski’s barren streak at the World Cup was somewhat puzzling. Now, after five previous matches at the tournament, it’s over.

Lewandowski also set up the opener in the 40th minute when he kept the ball in play after goalkeeper Mohammed Al-Owais’ initial block, then laid it back for Piotr Zielinski to knock in.

Lewandowski also hit the post and Al-Owais denied the Barcelona player from scoring another goal late in the match.

Poland was scrambling for long periods at the Education City Stadium as the Saudi team was pushed forward by enthusiastic fans in what seemed like a home game. The frustration was clear on Lewandowski’s face as Poland’s yellow cards mounted.

Saudi Arabia had a chance to equalize at the end of the first half but Poland goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny saved Salem Al-Dawsari’s penalty kick. He then blocked Mohammed Al-Burayk’s shot from the rebound.

Poland will next face Argentina, while Saudi Arabia will meet Mexico in their last Group C games.

___

AP World Cup coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/world-cup and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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