As it happened: Russia had lot at stake, failing to secure a win in 7 non competitive attempts since beating Korea republic in October. The team had come under scrutiny from fans and pundits alike. They were the lowest ranked team among the 32 participating teams, but they defied the odds, beating Saudi Arabia 5-0 in a stellar opening match at the FIFA World Cup 2018.
The opening match was up and running with five beautiful goals scored. Gazinsky had the honor of opening the scoring at Russia 2018 with a quality header straight to the back of the net. The assist came from Golovin. From the second phase of a corner, he fired a corner into the box from the left and Gazinsky wasted no time in heading to the bottom corner.
The second goal came from Cheryshev who brilliantly took the ball to his right foot from the left flank and fires it straight to the left bottom corner!
Yury Gazinsky scores the first FIFA 2018 world cup goal and its for the host nation, Russia. #WorldCupRussia2018 #FifaWorldCup18 #FifaWorldCup2018 — watching FIFA World Cup
— Biman Ghosh (@biman7777) June 14, 2018
Wow! What a goal from Denis Cheryshev!
Russia bagged this in 43 minutes, very unexpected
— Tancredi Palmeri (@tancredipalmeri) June 14, 2018
The goals were much needed for Russia, who look to make history by qualifying to the knockout rounds for the first time in their World Cup run! The former Real Madrid winger Cheryshev started as a substitute but had to come on pertaining to an injury to teammate Dzagoev, who was brilliantly pulling the strings for Russia.
The third goal came from A. Dzyuba at at 72nd minute, another substitute. The forward guided his header into the bottom right corner.
Saudi Arabia looked unstable at the back with disappointing defensive display, giving away plenty of errors. This time again, it was Golovin cross from the right flank towards the middle. Dzyuba made the move to beat the attention of the Saudi defender before placing his effort past Al-Mayoof.
89 – Artem Dzyuba scored just 89 seconds after coming off the bench, the quickest sub goal at a WorldCup tournament since Marcin Zewlakow for Poland vs USA in 2002 (64 seconds). Rapid. #Russia2018
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 14, 2018
Dzyuba scores the third goal for Russia #WorldCup #WorldCupRussia2018 pic.twitter.com/YOGqvhCw74
— Goal_playerz (@pitchplayerz) June 14, 2018
WHAT A BANGER BY CHERYSHEV!!! Set up by a Russian free kick to Dzyuba who appeared to be offside but the AR kept his flag down, Dzyuba sends the ball to Cheryshev who slots a very nice curler from the edge of the box. 2 Goals for the Russian. 4-0 #WorldCupRussia2018
— JDBailey(Flipcasing) (@jdbailey_13) June 14, 2018
That’s one way to wrap up a victory! Russia 4-0 Saudi Arabia. #Cheryshev #WorldCup pic.twitter.com/Hfm7kyQrM3
— GolTorGoal (@GoalTorGol) June 14, 2018
The Russians were not done there! The show stopper came from Golovin who scored a peach of free-kick! 2 assists and a superb free kick for Golovin who stole the show at the opening match. Sensational stuff from the Russians.
Golovin makes it 5-0 with a brilliant free kick! pic.twitter.com/Ic1qVbY8nI
— World Cup 2018 (@WCGoalz) June 14, 2018
Russians have re-written history. The Arabians will need to recover from this. 5- nil victory on the opening match, this world cup is already looking to be very promising and non stop entertainment event!