Festival of goals at Russia's World Cup opening ceremony

Irving Hamilton
Июня 15, 2018

But if you want to track the tournament through the groups all the way to the final on July 15 you can download Express Sport's World Cup wall chart.

Goals from Yury Gazinsky, Artem Dzyuba and Aleksandr Golovin helped them on their way, but the former Real Madrid man stole the limelight after coming on as a first half subsitute.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud and Federation Internationale de Football Association president Gianni Infantino attended the opener along with further dignitaries and heads of state - but none from Western European or North American countries.

Saudi Arabia goalkeeper Abdullah Almuaiouf is beaten by a free kick from Russia's Alexander Golovin in extra-time of their World Cup opener.

It was Russia's first World Cup win since 2002 and ended a seven-game winless run overall - the national team's longest winless streak in 20 years.

Russian Federation looked more purposeful from the start as they poured into the vast spaces on both flanks and it was no surprise when they opened the scoring after 12 minutes as Gazinsky was left unmarked to nod home Golovin's deep left-wing cross.

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Two-goal hero Denis Cheryshev celebrates victory with teammates after Russia's 5-0 rout of Saudi Arabia.

Cheryshev chipped the ball over two Saudi defenders in the 43rd minute and shot over goalkeeper Abdullah Al Muaiouf's right side. A few hours ago, I went down to the stadium, which can hold over 80-thousand spectators, ... and ticket holders for the opening match were crowding in already for the World Cup's opening ceremony.

Having lost several key players to injury before the World Cup, the loss of Dzagoev to what appeared to be a hamstring pull halfway through the first half of the opening game was merely another setback for coach Cherchesov.

A lack of an attacking threat in recent outings was a primary concern for Russian Federation going into a group campaign in which they will also face Egypt and Uruguay.

The other Group A teams Uruguay and Egypt meet Friday in Yekaterinburg.

Russian Federation lost Dzagoev to a hamstring injury midway through the first half, the CSKA Moscow midfielder clutching his hamstring as he crumpled to the turf.

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