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  1. FIFA World Cup 2018, Russia vs Saudi Arabia Highlights: Goal! Denis Cheryshev scores brace in opening match, hosts beat Green Falcons 5-0

FIFA World Cup 2018, Russia vs Saudi Arabia Highlights: Goal! Denis Cheryshev scores brace in opening match, hosts beat Green Falcons 5-0

FIFA World Cup 2018, Russia vs Saudi Arabia: Yuri Gazinsky of Russia scored the first goal of FIFA World Cup 2018.

By: | Updated:Jun 14, 2018 10:34 pm
FIFA World Cup 2018: Russia vs Saudi Arabia will be played at Luzhniki Stadium.

FIFA World Cup 2018, Russia vs Saudi Arabia: After a scintillating performance by Robbie Williams, Saudi Arabia kicked off the FIFA World Cup 2018 at Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. However, it was Russia’s Yuri Gazinsky who scored the opening goal of the FIFA World Cup 2018. He lept high (and possibly shoving his marker in the back) to guide a cross from the left past Abdullah Al-Mayouf and inside the left upright. Following his goal, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Arabia Prince Mohammed Bin Salman were seen shaking hands.

Aleksandr Golovin is a young attacking midfielder with a magic touch for Russia. He and Anton Miranchuk are the keys to unlocking the defence with their through balls and creating chances for their goal-machine Fedor Smolov. However, Russia will sorely miss the injured striker Aleksandr Kokorin and the wing-backs are arguably too old and as for the centre-backs, they are too young and inexperienced.

WATCH| FIFA World Cup 2018 Opening Ceremony LIVE Streaming

Talking about Saudi Arabia, the side from the gulf is an attacking side with three midfielders – Salem al-Dawsari, Yahya al-Shehri and Fahad al-Muwallad, who can test any defence in Russia. Coach Juan Antonio Pizzi is expected to play a 4-2-3-1 formation, with an experienced defence.

WATCH| Russia vs Saudi Arabia, FIFA World Cup 2018 Live Streaming in India

However, the problem is that the back four are susceptible to pace and rarely plays against the kind of top-calibre attackers you find at the World Cup.

Live Blog

FIFA World Cup 2018: Russia vs Saudi Arabia LIVE score:

Highlights

  • 22:30 (IST)

    Full-time: Russia 5-0 Saudi Arabia

    Peep! Peep! Peeeeeep! It’s all over – Russia have thrashed a fairly abject Saudi Arabia side by five goals in the opening game of Russia 2018. In a match low on quality, most of the goals were a bit special. It’s a great start for the hosts, whose supporters were fearing the worst going into this game. Russia get three points on the board and lead group A.

  • 22:27 (IST)

    GOAL! Russua 5-0 Saudi Arabia (Golovin)

    That is a fantastic goal from Aleksandr Golovin! The Russian midfielder scores with a sublime free-kick, curling the ball around the Saudi wall and wide of the post, only for it to curl back inside and beyond the reach of Al-Mayouf from about 25 yards. That is a wonderful strike!

  • 22:23 (IST)

    GOAL! Russia 4-0 Saudi Arabia (Cheryshev 90)

    Denis Cheryshev scores the goal of the night, floating the ball into the top corner with an insoucient swish of his left boot from the edge of the Saudi penalty area.

  • 22:03 (IST)

    GOAL! Russia 3-0 Saudi Arabia (Dzyuba)

    Well colour me pink and call me Mystic Meg – Dzyuba scores with his first touch. A header.

  • 21:23 (IST)

    Half-time: Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia

    The hosts go in for their half-time break with a two-goal lead and it’s little more than they deserve. Yuri Gazinsky headed them into the lead on 12 minutes, before Denis Cheryshev doubled their lead 31 minutes later. He had come off the bench previously to replace the luckless Alan Dzagoev, who was forced off with a hamstring injury.

  • 21:22 (IST)

    Half-time: Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia

  • 21:16 (IST)

    GOAL! Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia (Cheryshev 43)

  • 20:45 (IST)

    GOAL! Russia 1-0 Saudi Arabia (Gazinsky 12)

    Russia score: Yuri Gazinsky heads Russia into the lead.

  • 20:27 (IST)

    Saudi Arabia Playing XI

  • 20:27 (IST)

    Russia squad

  • 20:24 (IST)

    President Vladimir Putin gives welcome speech

    Vladimir Putin is giving a welcome speech, which suggests there’s probably enough time to make some tea and/or weep silently about what football has done to itself before kick-off.

  • 20:11 (IST)

    Blink and you miss the first kick of FIFA WORLD CUP 2018

    Ronaldo passes the ball to the mascot, Zabivaka. This was “a symbolic first kick”. Blink and you missed it.

  • 19:57 (IST)

    Playing XI

    Teams have announced the playing XI. Both Russia and Saudi Arabia have an unchanged side. Russia have included Aleksandr Golovin, a young attacking midfielder with a magic touch.

  • 18:33 (IST)

    FIFA 19 trailer released

    Right ahead of the World Cup EA released the official trailer for FIFA 19. Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo has featured on the cover page. This is the first time that EA will officially have the right for the Champions League and Europa League. The music for the trailer has been composed by Hans Zimmer.

  • 17:49 (IST)

    Who is Lev 'Black Spider Yashin?

    Lev Yashin is the man responsible to gather the attention of the world to Russia's footballing prowess. He featured 1958, 1962 and 1966. In 1966 he helped Russia reach the fourth spot in the WC. FIFA once again paid homage to the ‘Black Spider’ by putting him on the official poster of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The vintage-styled illustration has Yashin wearing his iconic cap and all-black gear, leaping for an oversized ball that has the outline of Russia on it.

22:30 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Full-time: Russia 5-0 Saudi Arabia

Peep! Peep! Peeeeeep! It’s all over – Russia have thrashed a fairly abject Saudi Arabia side by five goals in the opening game of Russia 2018. In a match low on quality, most of the goals were a bit special. It’s a great start for the hosts, whose supporters were fearing the worst going into this game. Russia get three points on the board and lead group A.

22:27 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
GOAL! Russua 5-0 Saudi Arabia (Golovin)

That is a fantastic goal from Aleksandr Golovin! The Russian midfielder scores with a sublime free-kick, curling the ball around the Saudi wall and wide of the post, only for it to curl back inside and beyond the reach of Al-Mayouf from about 25 yards. That is a wonderful strike!

22:24 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

90+2 min: Cheryshev scores his second ever international goal and they’ve both come in the same game. His first was sublime, showing great close control. His second was also a beauty, sending the ball high past Al-Mayouf with the outside of his left boot from the left side of the penalty area. A tip of the hat also to Artem Dzyuba, who teed him up.

22:23 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
GOAL! Russia 4-0 Saudi Arabia (Cheryshev 90)

Denis Cheryshev scores the goal of the night, floating the ball into the top corner with an insoucient swish of his left boot from the edge of the Saudi penalty area.

22:22 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

90+1 min: We’re into three minutes of added time at the end of the opening game of World Cup 2018.

22:18 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

86 min: Russia win a corner, which Salman Al-Faraj clears at the near post.

22:10 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

78 min: Saudi substitution from immediately after latest goal: Yahya Al-Shehri off, Hatan Bahbri on.

22:09 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

76 min: Russia win a free-kick wide on the right and Golvin curls the ball into the penalty area. The ball is headed wide by somebody who wasn’t Dzyuba - apologies, I didn’t see who as I had eyes only for him.

22:07 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
22:06 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

73 min: Having been on the field mere seconds, Dzyuba scores with a wonderful header that I’m fairly certain was his first touch of the ball. The ball was curled his way from the right flank by Zobnin and the big man made no mistake. From eight yards, he beat his man and placed an unstoppable header into the bottom right-hand corner. An excellent finish.

22:03 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
GOAL! Russia 3-0 Saudi Arabia (Dzyuba)

Well colour me pink and call me Mystic Meg – Dzyuba scores with his first touch. A header.

22:01 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

68 min: Heart in mouth time for Saudi Arabia as Al-Mayouf spills what should have been fairly straightforward save and the ball drops to the feet of Smolov. The Saudi goalkeeper bravely dives to smother the ball before the Russian can flick it goalwards.

21:59 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

66 min: Cheryshev heads into the arms of Al-Mayouf after being teed up by Golovin.

21:58 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Look who is in the house
21:58 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

63 min: Saudi Arabaia send on their first subsitute. Every country has their “Messi” and Fahad Al-Mulwallad is Saudi Arabia’s. Indeed, he was a surprise omission from today’s starting line-up. A winger by trade, he replaces Abdullah Otayf and takes up a central position, with Mohammad Al-Salawi moving wide.

21:54 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

61 min: We pass the hour mark and Russia still enjoy a comfortable lead, their goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev yet to make any kind of save.

21:54 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
21:23 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Half-time: Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia

The hosts go in for their half-time break with a two-goal lead and it’s little more than they deserve. Yuri Gazinsky headed them into the lead on 12 minutes, before Denis Cheryshev doubled their lead 31 minutes later. He had come off the bench previously to replace the luckless Alan Dzagoev, who was forced off with a hamstring injury.

21:22 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Half-time: Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia
21:19 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

44 min: Denis Cheryshev has been very impressive since coming on and he scores a fine goal to make it 2-0 to Russia as we approach half-time. With Russia on the counter-attack and a three-on-two advantage, he picked the ball up on the inside left channel from Smolov. He cut inside and took a touch as two defenders dived in, selling themselves completely. With the goal at his mercy, Cheryshev proceeded to blast the ball into the roof of the net from about 12 yards.

21:17 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Injury report!
21:16 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
GOAL! Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia (Cheryshev 43)
21:14 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

38 min: It’s pretty poor quality fare on offer from the two lowest ranked teams in the tournament. Both sides are quite sloppy in possession and seem incapable of holding on to the ball. Russia are worth their one-goal lead, but there’s not a huge amount between the two sides. Three places in the Fifa rankings, to be exact.

21:08 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

35 min: Salem Al-Dawsari picks up the ball not too far outside his own penalty area and goes on a mazy 60-metre run up the centre, before running up a blind alley.

21:00 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
20:59 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

26 min: Cheryshev wins the ball deep inside his own half and runs 60 or more metres with the ball before being disposssessed as he tries to hold it up. Saudi Arabia keep giving the ball away and are being made to suffer for it as they get caught high up the field with a series of Russian counter-attacks.

20:55 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

23 min: Nothing comes of the corner and as Russia break on the counter, Alan Dzagoev pulls up with what looks like a torn hamstring. It looks like his World Cup could be over already. Poor guy.

20:54 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

20 min: Yasser Al-Shahrani has been Saudi Arabia’s stand-out player thus far and again surges up the left flank. He crosses to Mohammad Al-Sahlaawi, whose diving header is deflected narrowly wide of the left upright by Ilya Kupetov for a Saudi Arabia corner.

20:52 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

19 min: Russia are becoming increasingly dominant, having settled their early jitters with the opening goal. Aleksandr Samedov attacks down the right again and drills a cross into the penalty area Saudi Arabia clear.

20:50 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

15 min: Al-Mayouf is forced to claw the ball away after a deflected shot from Fyodor Smolov threatens to loop over his head and into the Saudi Arabia goal. There was a clear offside in the build-up, but the linesman missed it.

20:47 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Yuri Gazinsky scores!

12 min: Yuri Gazinsky scores the opening goal of the FIFA World Cup 2018. He lept high (and possibly shoving his marker in the back) to guide a cross from the left past Abdullah Al-Mayouf and inside the left upright.

20:46 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
First pass of World Cup 2018
20:45 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
GOAL! Russia 1-0 Saudi Arabia (Gazinsky 12)

Russia score: Yuri Gazinsky heads Russia into the lead.

20:43 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

10 min: Hosts win another corner. Zhirkov takes it again.  The former Chelsea man tries to pick  Alan Dzagoev but too much of power behind the delivery. Yasser Al-Shahrani heads clear for Saudi Arabia.

20:41 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

7 min: Russia win a throw-in deep in Saudi Arabia territory, then another. Omar Hawsawi clears. Moments previously Dzagoev had sent Fernandes galloping down the left flank with a nicely weighted ball. His cross was met by Smolov, who struck from 12 yards or so only to see his shot blocked.

20:40 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

6 min: Saudi Arabia goalkeeper Abdullah Al-Mayouf is forced to gallop out of his box and hack the ball clear under pressure after being sold short by a back-pass.

20:39 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

4 min: No chances of any kind so far and the game is yet to settle into kind of rhythm. It’s a bit of a pell-mell start and Russia are slightly dominant. They’re lofting high balls towards the Saudi Arabia centre-backs, who have dealt with them reasonably comfortable so far.

20:37 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

3 min: Aleksandr Golovin wins a corner for Russia after chasing a long ball in behind the Saudi Arabia defence. Yuri Zhirkov swings the ball towards the near post, where it’s cleared.

20:34 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Free Kick!

2 min: Aleksandr Samedov wins the first free-kick of the tournament, getting tripped by Mohammad Al-Breik as he gallops down the right flank.

20:34 (IST) 14 Jun 2018

1 min: Saudi Arabia immediately go on the attack down the left flank, but Russia clear their lines.

20:33 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
World Cup 2018 is go!!!

1 min: Nestor Pitana blows his whistle, Saudi Arabia kick off and the World Cup finals are under way.

20:27 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Saudi Arabia Playing XI
20:27 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Russia squad
20:24 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
President Vladimir Putin gives welcome speech

Vladimir Putin is giving a welcome speech, which suggests there’s probably enough time to make some tea and/or weep silently about what football has done to itself before kick-off.

20:19 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Countries present during the FIFA WORLD CUP 2018 Opening Ceremony
 
20:11 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Blink and you miss the first kick of FIFA WORLD CUP 2018

Ronaldo passes the ball to the mascot, Zabivaka. This was “a symbolic first kick”. Blink and you missed it.

20:07 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Casillas reunited with FIFA trophy

Former Spain player Iker Casillas and model Natalia Vodianova are seen next to the World Cup Trophy prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Group A match between Russia and Saudi Arabia at Luzhniki Stadium.

20:00 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Aerial view of Luzhniki Stadium

An aerial view of Luzhniki Stadium. The stadium is majestic and looks beautiful.

 

The venue hosting the opening and final matches of the 2018 FIFA #WorldCup 😍

A post shared by FIFA World Cup (@fifaworldcup) on

19:57 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Playing XI

Teams have announced the playing XI. Both Russia and Saudi Arabia have an unchanged side. Russia have included Aleksandr Golovin, a young attacking midfielder with a magic touch.

19:26 (IST) 14 Jun 2018
Know all about Luzhniki Stadium
 
The Luzhniki will host seven World Cup matches including the Opening Match and Final. Its capacity swelled to 80,000 after a four-year renovation period. It will host the Opening Match, three group-stage encounters, a Round-of-16 tie, a semi-final and the Final.  

Location: The Luzhniki is located in one of the most picturesque areas of the Russian capital, as part of a wider Olympic complex bearing the same name that spreads over 180 hectares. The Moskva River flows right alongside the stadium and there is a cable-car connecting the two. Tens of thousands of Muscovites play all kinds of sports at the Luzhniki Olympic Complex and today it is a popular place for recreation and family strolls.

RUSSIA

Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Vladimir Gabulov (Brugge/BEL), Andrey Lunev (Zenit St Petersburg)

Defenders: Vladimir Granat (Rubin Kazan), Fyodor Kudryashov (Rubin Kazan), Ilya Kutepov (Spartak Moscow), Andrey Semyonov (Akhmat Grozny), Igor Smolnikov (Zenit St Petersburg), Mario Fernandes (CSKA Moscow), Sergei Ignashevich (CSKA Moscow)

Midfielders: Yury Gazinsky (Krasnodar), Alan Dzagoev (CSKA Moscow), Alexander Golovin (CSKA Moscow), Alexander Erokhin (Zenit St Petersburg), Yury Zhirkov (Zenit St Petersburg), Daler Kuzyaev (Zenit St Petersburg), Roman Zobnin (Spartak Moscow, Alexander Samedov (Spartak Moscow), Anton Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Denis Cheryshev (Villarreal/ESP)

Forwards: Artem Dzyuba (Arsenal Tula), Alexei Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Fyodor Smolov (Krasnodar)

SAUDI ARABIA

Goalkeepers: Yasser al-Mosaileem (Al-Ahli), Abdullah al-Mayouf (Al-Hilal), Mohammed al-Owais (Al-Ahli)

Defenders: Mansour al-Harbi (Al-Ahli), Yasser al-Shahrani (Al-Hilal), Osama Hawsawi (Al-Hilal), Omar Hawsawi (Al-Nassr), Motaz Hawsawi (Al-Ahli), Ali al-Bulayhi (Al-Hilal), Mohammed al-Burayk (Al-Hilal)

Midfielders: Abdulla Otayf (Al-Hilal), Salman al-Faraj (Al-Hilal), Mohammed Kanno (Al-Hilal), Abdullah al-Khaibari (Al-Shabab), Hussein al-Moqahwi (Al-Ahli), Abdulmalik al-Khaibari (Al-Hilal), Hattan Bahebri (Al Shabab), Salem al-Dawsari (Al-Hilal), Taisir al-Jassim (Al-Ahli), Yahya al-Shehri (Al-Nassr), Fahad al-Muwallad (Al-Ittihad)

Forwards: Mohannad Assiri (Al-Ahli), Mohammed al-Sahlawi (Al-Nassr)

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