Doha: Head coach Herve Renard is relishing Saudi Arabia’s Gulf Cup football tournament encounter against Qatar on Thursday, describing it as a meeting between “two big teams”.

“It is good to face a strong team who are the Asian champions. We have an excellent team and good players,” he said. “I know Qatar are doing well and are a capable team.”

Both teams overcame tough starts to reach the semi-finals, with Saudi Arabia suffering a 3-1 defeat to Iraq, and Qatar also losing 2-1 to Iraq.

Qatar bounced back with wins over Yemen and the close fight against the UAE as Group A runners-up, while Saudi Arabia topped Group B after defeating Bahrain and defending champions Oman.