After the Russian media has described the Host team Russia as the worst iteration in history and destined for failure. at the beging the host struggle to make an impact at their own World Cup but thanks in part to the CSKA midfielder, the hosts are off to a flyer with a 5-0 riot despite the fact that no one gave them a chance.
According to critics for Russia to progressing from Group A then two things would have to happen.
which are: One, they must not fail to get three points their first match against Saudi Arabia. Two, Aleksandr Golovin must be at his best.
Coming against all the odds they broke out here to defy the naysayers and give the home fans a result they could only dream of. in attendance were 78,011 fans inside the Luzkniki providing the support to this one. And Russia put to bed their build up woes and embraced the pressure put upon their shoulders by host of supporters that were less optimistic but hopeful. It would be easy to hide, easy to make mistakes but Russia settled and then excelled in front of goal.
No doubt Saudi Arabia are the weakest team in the group yet had most of the ball possession. Midfielder Abdullah Otayf controlled the midfield in a classic fashion, dictated the tempo of the play.
They were the better team in the middle of the park – which may soun crazy considering 5-0 scoreline – with enterprising wide men Mohamed Alburyak and Yasir Alshahrani getting forward often to create more lines of attack.
Striker Mohammed Alsahlawi is totally out of touch and without a strike for over 12 months now.
Pizzi’s team are suffering from a crisis in confidence when it comes to goalscoring and gave Igor Akinfeev – and 38-year-old CSKA Moscow colleague Sergey Ignashevich – little to worry about.
Golovin who just celebrated his 22nd birthdayon the other hand made sure Russia could capitalize on the errors the Saudis were making to punish them.
He created the opener for Krasnodar’s Iury Gazinsky. and also did well to prompt the second which Roman Zobnin eventually laid on for substitute Denis Cheryshev who got a brace. He Golovin also created the third for Artem Dzyuba who also grabbed an assist even if the stunning fourth was all the work of Cheryshev.
Golovin got one for himself when he score the fifth goal at the 94th minute to cap a stunning performance- a goal that Arsenal fans who saw him do the same thing for CSKA at the Emirates a few weeks back must recorgnise.
A blow for the Russians came at 23rd minute when play-maker Alan Dzagoev went down heavily clutching his hamstring and his tears showed his World Cup is over at the early moments of the tournament.