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Renard: Qualification is a must for Saudi Arabia

Jeddah: Saudi Arabia will respect their opponents but their target, head coach Herve Renard has stressed, is qualification for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar.

That is the target the Frenchman has been set by the Saudi Arabian Football Federation and it is one that he is relishing.

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Renard, who was appointed head coach in July, spoke exclusively to ahead of Saudi Arabia's Asian Qualifiers Group D campaign for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar and AFC Asian Cup China 2023.

The three-time AFC Asian Cup winners have Uzbekistan, Palestine, Yemen and Singapore for company and are favourites to seal one of the two spots from the group into the third round of the Qualifiers.

Advancing will mean sealing early qualification for the AFC Asian Cup China 2023 and moving closer to a second successive appearance in the FIFA World Cup, and sixth overall.

In Renard, Saudi Arabia have a highly experienced and successful coach, with the Frenchman having won the African Cup of Nations with Zambia in 2012 and Ivory Coast three years later.

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