FIFA World Cup 2018: Russia beat Saudi Arabia by 5-0 in World Cup opener
Host Russia faced Saudi Arabia in the opening match of the FIFA world cup 2018.
Host Russia faced Saudi Arabia in the opening match of the FIFA world cup 2018. Russia had the home crowd advantage of playing in front of 80,000 football fans at Luzhniki stadium. Russia crushed Saudi Arabia by 5-0 scoreline in the opening encounter of the world cup.
Russia and Saudi Arabia faced each other for the first time after 25 years. Last time they faced each other was in a friendly match in 1993. Saudi Arabia won the match by a 4-2 score, but a lot has changed in both the teams since then.
Russian coach Stan Islav opted for 4-2-3-1 formation against as his counterpart Saudi Arabia's coach Antonio Pizzi who Opted for 4-1-4-1.
Both the team started on the right note, getting an equal share of attack in the first 10 minutes of the match. Russia took an early lead in the 12th minute from Yury Gazinsky header. After the first goal, Russia looked more dangerous in the attack. Saudi Arabia enjoyed 60 percent of the possession in the first half, in a counter-attack on 42nd minute Denis Cheryshev who came as a substitute for injured Alan Dzagoev added another goal making it 2-0 before halftime. The second half did not have much for Saudi Arabia, as the host ended the first half with a 2-0 lead.
Saudi Arabia started second Half brightly as they created more chances in the starting 20 minutes. On the 70th minute, Russia sealed the match with a header from substitute striker Artem Dzyuba. After the 3rd goal, there was no coming back for Saudi Arabia in the match. Russia added more to the misery of Saudi Arabia in the dying minutes of the game with Denis Cheryshev scoring his second and 4th for Russia. Young Aleksandr Golovin added the tally to 5-0 in the last minute of the game, scoring goal in his first world cup appearance. Match ended with Russia winning three valuable points on the points table.