Published: Fri, June 15, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Russian Federation thump Saudi Arabia in World Cup opener

Russian Federation thump Saudi Arabia in World Cup opener

Russian Federation launched the World Cup party in spectacular style when they thrashed a feeble Saudi Arabia 5-0 in the tournament's opening match on Thursday to give the host nation the lift they desperately needed after a nine-month winless run.

Russian Federation sat back in the second half, but Saudi were still unable to create anything, and then on 71 minutes - just 89 seconds after coming on - Artem Dzyuba headed home the hosts' third.

The hosts did lose Alan Dzagoev to a serious-looking injury, though. Cherchesov said later that his tournament might be over but one man's misfortune is another's opportunity as his replacement Cheryshev doubled the lead with a mesmerizing touch of skill. It picks out Gazinski at the back post, and he shoves Taiseer before guiding a fine header into the far corner for his first global goal! Aleksandr Golovin fired in a attractive cross from right to the centre of the box from where Yuri Gazinskiy headed it in at the left post past Abdullah Mayoof to make it 1-0.

Two minutes from time, Saudi Arabia were caught by a counter-attack again and this time it proved costly. As half-time approached the substitute made it 2-0.

At the beginning of the second half, Aleksandr Samedov's right footed shot from outside the box was close, missing out on the top left corner.

U.S., Mexico and Canada to Host 2026 World Cup
The joint bid defeated Morocco's application with 134 of the 200 votes cast at the FIFA Congress in Moscow on Wednesday. The united bid projected it would make a profit of $14 billion, twice what Morocco would have delivered.

Don't miss a moment of the World Cup! Golovin made his second assist of the game as his cross from right saw Dzyuba outjump Saudi captain Osama Hawsawi and head it in.

Should Russia qualify from group A, where they face Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Uruguay, It will be their first ever qualification to the knock-outs stage.

Last Participation in World Cup: 2014, finishing 24th.

Russia's fans, forced to suffer years of poor performances in friendlies that left their team an embarrassing 70th in the world rankings will not care about the quality of the opponents. Before substitute Artem Dzyuba connected with another ideal cross from Golovin to make it 3-0 for the hosts.

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