Vladimir Putin says football unites planet as World Cup begins in Russian Federation

Sports       by Muhammad Irfan | Published

Every World Cup needs the host nation to energise the population, and Russian Federation have ticked that box with this result.

"We saw that we are on the right track but we should forget this game and concentrate on the next one", Cherchesov said after ending a seven-game winless run in emphatic style.

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.

The Russians served up an adrenaline-fuelled performance for an 80,000-capacity Luzhniki crowd which included President Vladimir Putin and the Saudi crown prince.

Saudi Arabia's midfielder Taisir Al-Jassim (L) vies with Russia's midfielder Aleksandr Golovin during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 14, 2018.

After Cheryshev's first goal, Artyom Dzyuba made an instant impact off the bench to make it 3-0 in the 71st with a header from Golovin's cross.

Yet given Saudi Arabia's high turnover of coaches, including a previous mid-World Cup sacking, the Argentine-born Pizzi could well be on his way before he gets a chance to try and rectify the situation.

The World Cup got under way after British pop singer Robbie Williams took centre stage at the opening ceremony.

What's next? The other two sides in Group A - Egypt and Uruguay - open their campaigns when they meet at midnight tonight (NZT).

The hosts could hardly have dreamt of a better start to their home tournament, putting the Saudis to the sword with the last two goals coming in added time.

Saudi Arabia's next Group A encounter is against Uruguay in Rostov on June 20.

Saudi Arabia's route to the knockout round is much more hard.

Cheryshev then smashed in his second goal and Aleksandr Golovin scored from a freekick in the final minutes to wrap up a comfortable Russian win in which the Saudis failed to test Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev.

Russian Federation meet Egypt in their next match on Jun 19 in Saint Petersburg, while Saudi Arabia will look to rebound against group favourites Rostov-on-Don a day later. Flag-waving supporters from all over the world let out huge cheers and chanted "Russia!" as the host team scored twice in the first half at the city's Luzhniki Stadium.



Latest news

Italy and France trade insults as migration row boils over
A European Union summit later in June is due to consider changes to asylum law to better share the burden of incoming migrants. On Monday, Spain said that it would be welcoming the Aquarius and allowing it to dock in Valencia.

Saudis Say Deal to Gradually Boost OPEC Output `Inevitable'
The House Judiciary Committee approved a bill Wednesday to subject OPEC to US antitrust law by removing state immunity shields. A mix of new USA sanctions on Iran, chaos in Venezuela and robust global growth has tightened the oil market.

Duchess Meghan Markle & Queen Elizabeth Avoid a Royal Mishap at Their Car
It seems Meghan Markle gets along with her in-laws just fine! "I'm very happy to be here". "You go first", the Queen replied. There were a lot of possible destinations as to where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex would spend their honeymoon.

Don't debate Messi-Ronaldo-enjoy their potential WC farewell
Thankfully, he reversed his decision, allowing us the opportunity to watch him on the sport's biggest stage one last time . The incoming Real Madrid coach has previously stated that he believes Leo Messi is the greatest soccer player in history.

Rising Kashmir editor’s PSOs also dead, Rajnath calls it a cowardice act
He was a fearless heart who fought fearlessly for justice and peace in Jammu and Kashmir. "He will be missed", he said on Twitter. Bukhari also aired his disappointments in the Mehbooba Mufti government even as he raised concerns about the security situation.

Other news