Russia 2018: Akinfeev heriocs helps Russia past Spain

Russia 2018: Akinfeev heriocs helps Russia past Spain

Captain of the Russian national team Igor Akinfeev pulled off two crucial saves during penalty shootout as Spain were dumped out the the World Cup by the hosts.

The 2010 World Cup winners took the lead in the 11th minute through an unfortunate own goal by the oldest member of the Russian team Sergei Ignashevich but the hosts soon rallied back earning themselves a penalty which Dzyuba converted before the break.

However, despite controlling the larger share of ball possession Spain failed to get a second goal as the Russians defended well like a unit throughout the match using all three substitutions before the 70th minute mark.

Guess that explains the tired legs walking round the pitch towards the end of the game as the hosts hung on by a thread. They were almost punished by the trio of Isco, Iniesta and Aspas but goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev had to pull off a double save to keep his team in the game.

During the extra period Spain like they had done all game kept hugging the ball and passing it around without penetrating the determined Russian defence; and after thirty minutes of extra time, off we went to penalties!

Akinfeev was however the hero saving Koke and Aspas’s penalty kicks to send the hosts to the quarter finals 3-4 on penalty kicks.

After such a huge upset, the Russian coach seemed rather unemotional and here is what he had to say about that:

Spain coach Fernando Hierro on the other hand thinks there is nothing to be ashamed about in the way they exited the tournament.

Russia will either Croatia or Denmark in the quarter finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup depending on which of the two teams make it through.

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