Claim: Viral videos and reports suggest that Saudi Arabia officials promised players of the Saudi Arabia national team a Bugatti each.
Verdict: False. Using the Invid video verification tool, we discovered that the viral image was doctored. The original video was taken at a press conference on October 24, 2022, when the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud encouraged the national team players ahead of the World Cup. Also, Head Coach Hervé Jean-Marie Roger Renard and striker of the team Saleh bin Khalid bin Mohammed Al-Shehria have described the claim as untrue.
A video of Saudi Arabia officials purportedly promising the country’s footballers a Bugatti each after its win against Argentina has gone viral on social media.
The video can be seen in a post captured by a Twitter user @TAFELMUKOVIC.
In the video, the Saudi Arabia officials are purportedly heard saying, “Now that we have Argentina out of the way, I will fulfil my promise. Everybody will receive a Bugatti fully spec and fully loaded. Now, we have Poland. For Poland, we have to fully annihilate them, and if we do, everyone will receive a skyscraper. But if we don’t win, we have dug eleven graves for each footballer on the pitch.”
The caption of one of the tweets says, “Saudi Arabia players to get a Rolls-Royce each for defeating Argentina. Wow.” The post has received over 150,000 likes and over 20,000 retweets so far.
Saudi Arabia pulled off one of the greatest World Cup shocks of all time by beating Argentina in their 2022 opener. The feat caused the Saudi Arabia authorities to declare a holiday on Wednesday, November 23, 2022, to mark the team’s stunning victory. But how true are the tweets by some social media users that the Saudi government has promised the players a Bugatti each?
DUBAWA did a video analysis using the Invid video verification tool. The tool gave us screenshots of frames in the video. These screenshots helped DUBAWA run a Yandex image search to verify the video’s authenticity.
The video is captioned, “’Enjoy the games!’ – Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince encourages national team players ahead of World Cup.” After a careful analysis of the video, DUBAWA found out there was no promise of a Bugatti to the players.
DUBAWA could not identify the origin of the imposed audio track used in the purported video. Still, it is possible that they were digitally constructed with a voice impersonator.
A thorough search also led DUBAWA to a press conference held by the Saudi Arabia national team. Addressing the reports in the question-and-answer session with a journalist, striker for the team Saleh bin Khalid bin Mohammed Al-Shehria rejected such statements and described them as untrue.
“It is not true, we are here to serve our country, and we did our best, so that’s our biggest achievement,” Al-Shehria said.
Also reacting to the reports, the coach for the team, Hervé Jean-Marie Roger Renard, urged the public to disregard such news. He said, “We have a serious government and ministry of sport, and this is not the time to get involved right now. We only won a game, and we still have two important matches. It’s not true.”
With the win the Saudi Arabian players achieved against Argentina, it will also be necessary to see the report’s stories on other Arab websites, including Aljazeera. But after carefully monitoring these websites, DUBAWA did not find any story backing such claims.
The assertion that the Saudi Arabia government promised its National Team members a Bugatti each after their win against Argentina is entirely false.