SAUDI Arabia's official team plane was forced to make an emergency landing after catching fire with the World Cup squad on board.

Shocking footage shows bright orange flames billowing from the 12-year-old jet's engines as it approached Rostov airport - where the team will take on Uruguay on Thursday morning (AEST).

An official statement read from the football association read: "The Saudi Football Federation wishes to reassure everyone about the safety of all members of the mission of the national team after a minor technical malfunction in an engine.

"The plane landed a few minutes ago at Rostov on Don Airport, and UNOMIG personnel are now safely heading to their residence."

The shaken players filmed themselves leaving the plane - a Russian Airlines Airbus A319-100 - shortly after landing.

They are hoping to redeem themselves after a humiliating 5-0 loss to hosts Russia last Thursday.

This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission