Goals in either half from star men Piotr Zielinski and Robert Lewandowski helped Poland to a first win at this World Cup against Saudi Arabia.
Despite being second best for large parts of the game, Poland showed their class with clinical finishing and had goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny to thank for a first-half penalty save.
Lewandowski pounced on a defensive lapse in concentration from Abdulelah Al-Malki to slide home his first ever World Cup goal with eight minutes remaining to seal the win.
Saudi Arabia’s match winner from their tie with Argentina, Salem Al-Dawsari, missed from the spot just before half time when presented with a chance to equalise, and they continued to be wasteful in the second half as they fell to defeat.
Poland were frustrated in the early stages, and picked up three yellow cards in the opening 20 minutes as they struggled to retain possession and cope with a lively Saudi side.
Zielinski scored after 39 minutes against the run of play and Lewandowski put the match beyond Saudi Arabia eight minutes from time, while goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny’s stunning double save from a penalty in first half stoppage time kept Poland in the match against a Saudi side that was always on the attack.
The result leaves Poland needing only a point from their final Group C match against Mexico to guarantee their spot in the next round.
Saudi Arabia were the better team for the first half and had the advantage of a few favoruable refereeing decisions but will rue the missed penalty from Salem Al-Dawsari, who scored the winner in their historic victory over Argentina on Tuesday.