Russia eliminates the 2010 World Cup Champs in Quarterfinal play.
Russia's 2018 World Cup campaign got off to a dream start on day one and and still going strong. After winning 2 out of 3 in the Group Stage, they were unlucky to match up against Spain in the knockout phase. Nothing much was expected of this Russian team, reflected by their FIFA ranking, results in friendlies, and the absence of key players including striker Aleksandr Kokorin, but here they are on the brink of facing the winner of this afternoon's matchup between Croatia and Denmark.
Their match against Spain didn't exactly get off to a dream start. Defender Sergei Ignashevich was unlucky to see the ball deflect off his leg. Marcos Asensio curled a spot kick into the penalty, and both Ignashevich and Spanish center-half Sergio Ramos hot in pursuit, unfortunately the Russian's tackle was mistimed leading to an own-goal. Luckily Russia was fortunate to equalize after Gerard Pique played the ball off his hand leading to spot kick, cooly taken by Russia's unsung hero of the tournament, Artem Dzyuba.
The scored remained tied at 1-1 until the 90 minute mark and extra time, meaning for the very first time in the tournament, the game would be decided by penalty kicks. Igor Akinfeev was able to make a pivotal save which sealed his Nation's fate, on account of the Russian kickers all hitting their mark. See for yourself below: