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Putin and Russia get their 1st win at the World Cup

World Cup trophy

With Saudi Arabia kicks off wearing green, while Russia is in red, Russia Showed their technical maturity, as the 67th and 70th ranked teams thrilled fan with a record breaking show piece.

That tells you the story of the match. From Red Square to Arbat Street, in front of the Karl Marx statue facing the Bolshoi Theater and in the jammed trains ferrying fans on Metro's 1 line, the spirit of the World Cup overshadowed the actual match.

"There are no words to describe how I'm feeling", said Cheryshev, before settling on "happy".

"Even if we lose, we'll bring home political, economical and negotiating potential, " the crown prince said.

He missed the final months of that season with injury and was again sidelined for much of the 2016-17 campaign before working his way back into World Cup contention at Villarreal this term.

The Saudis lost their past three games but remain upbeat at their first World Cup appearance for 12 years.

The match was evenly contested for most of the first half as both teams adopted a cautious approach to build-up play. It scored early, and then in the second half it scored often, grabbing two goals in the final minutes. He consolidated the hosts' lead on a Russian counter-attack, showing a cool head to commit two defenders before rifling home.

"I trust my efforts, I trust my players and I fully trust that we'll have a better performance in the next game", added the Saudi Arabia manager.

Smith leads after storm affects second round at US Women's Open
Round two was finished early on day three, with the cut-line unchanged and Ko sneaking into the back half of the major tournament. Jutanugarn had gone into her final round at 12-under 204 with her South Korean rival sitting in third place, six shots adrift.

The project to send key midfielders Fahad Al-Muwallad, Salem Al-Dawsari and Yahya Al-Shehri on loan to Spanish LaLiga clubs in January also backfired as they lacked the quality to break into their respective teams and clocked just 58 minutes of playing time.

The most creative player on the park, Golovin rolled the ball to Zobnin, but he dawdled and played a poor pass to Denis Cheryshev, who had been completely free on goal. Whiles the Arabians preferred to hold onto possession without goal, Russian Federation played to their strengths with coach Stanislav Cherchesov setting up his side to play on the quick counter.

I think the moneyline is far too much in favor of a mediocre Russian team, which is largely due to it being the host team.

When Dzagoev limped out midway through the first half with what appeared to be a hamstring injury, Russia's hopes of achieving anything significant looked to be leaving the pitch with him.

Saudi Arabia still have to play the two most hard teams in their group.

Cheryshev was excellent too, running down the left flank with a real sense of objective, as Russian Federation put in a performance that gives them a renewed sense of goal as they try to get out of a group that will provide much sterner tests against Egypt and Uruguay.

Dzagoev's injury could deny Russian Federation their best player for the remainder of the tournament, but they certainly have alternatives who can be similarly important.

Saudi Arabia's tournament on the other hand, may be effectively over. "As for our strategy, we must change", Pizzi closed.

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