Anyway, that's all from us for today - but join us tomorrow, when we'll have just the three games for you. Oooh yeah - the World cup is here!
- 2nd Half
- 1st Half
Russia - Saudi Arabia
World Cup - 14 June 2018
World Cup – Follow the Football match between Russia and Saudi Arabia live with Eurosport. The match starts at 23:00 on 14 June 2018. Our live coverage lets you follow all the key moments as they happen.
Who will come out on top in the battle of the managers Stanislav Cherchesov or Youssef Anbar? Find out by following our live matchcast.
Have your say by voting on who will win between Russia and Saudi Arabia? Enjoy some pre-match reading with related articles about these two Enjoy some pre-match reading with related articles about these two Football teams.
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What a performance by the hosts! Saudi were rotten, it's true, but Russia were all over them in the first 20 minutes and solid enough thereafter. If they can just beat Egypt next week, they'll be into the knockouts!
Full-time: Russia 5-0 Saudi Arabia
GREAT GOAL! Russia 5-0 Saudi Arabia (Golovin) Though he's on the far left of the box, Golovin decides that the free-kick is nevertheleess one for a right-footer, curling around and over the wall with precision. I reckon Russia might win this one.
Taiseer is booked for fouling Golovin - free-kick Russia, 20 yards out...
WHAT A GOAL! Russia 4-0 Saudi Arabia (Cheryshev) A long hump from Zhirkov picks out Dzyuba, from an offside position, nods down for Cheryshev to collect, breaking towards the box, left of centre. And what a finish he delivers, bent into the far top corner with the outside of his right foot like it's nothing (it is not nothing). Brilliant!
There shall be three added minutes.
Saudi again incur down the right, and Salem crosses low. Gazinski has time and space to get rid, but makes a mess of it and is robbed by Hatan, but Kutepov comes over to remedy the situation.
Russia win a free-kick down the left and Zhirkov curls in a dangerous ball, Kutepov can't reach. Somehow, Saudi still contrive to concede a corner, but it comes to nothing.
The Saudi manager must wish he could make 11 changes, but has to content himself with three and this is his last: off goes Alsahlawi, and on comes Muhannad.
Saudi get the ball down the right and Salem cuts inside on the line, but instead of crossing he keeps going until he's certain that he can ram the ball into someone's shins and call it a shot. Well played old mate, well played.
Saudi Arabia aren't the worst team I've seen this season, but they're in the bottom one.
Saudi are going to play against Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani in a few days. Ah.
Golovin, who's been the best player today, has apparently been linked with Manchester United. Like more or less everyone else, then.
Salem takes the ball inside from out on the left and drives a rasper that's not at all far wide of the far post. Akinfeev wasn't getting that, but luckily for him he didn't need to.
This'll sort it: Saudi make another change, Hatan replacing Yahia.
GOAL! Russia 3-0 Saudi Arabia (Dzuyba) Instant impact! Nice interplay down the right between Fernandes and Zobanin allowed Golovin to cross, and he picked out the new kid in the middle as the Saudi defence disintegrated, but even so, the backleaning header, across the keeper, was very nicely administered.
Another change for Russia: Dzyuba, all 6"5 of him, replaces Smolov. Apparently he doesn't mind a row, so hopefully we'll see something that no one wants to see.
Golovin wriggles some space, running at Omar who can't decide which way to face. Just inside the box, right of centre, he skids a low, tame shot towards the far corner which abdullah spills in pathetic fashion, but then recovers well to shove the loose ball away from Smolov.
Russia are sitting back and soaking it up, whatever "it" is.
A change apiece: for Saudi, Fahad replaces Otayf, and for Russia, Kuziaev replaces Samedov.
Russia have done nothing this half, but that's plenty for Saudi.
Saudi play a bit like Kick Off 2 - they're patting the ball to each other with reasonable accuracy (except for when they don't), but can't work out where the goal is.
The question on everybody's lips.
Saudi are coming ... gently, but they're coming. They win a corner down the left, Yahia sticks it in the middle, and Al-Faraj gets underneath it, heading over the top.
Saudi have a player called Al-Faraj, exactly what Nigel would have wanted.
Here come Saudi! Salem gets down the right and curls over a fine low cross. For the first time, there are men in the box, but Taiseer and Alsahlawy both hurl themselves at it and miss, so the ball sneaks by the far post.
Samedov finds Cheryshev down the left, he keeps the ball in, and crosses ... straight into the arms of Abdullah.
Saudi are just letting this match happen.
Again, Saudi defend indolently and the ball arrives at the feet of Smolov, who has time to control, look up, and drive a shot over the bar from 20 yards.
Salman finds himself caught out, with Smolov in behind him, and when Zhirkov releases an excellent pass, is forced to concede a corner. Nothing comes of it, but Saudi have got to start concentrating.
Saudi must've been given a real going-over in the dressing room. They're playing just as they played in the first half.
Not much going on here, so let's have some trivia.
Saudi don't really seem to have a plan. They're just kicking the ball.
Salman carries the ball forward, looks for a pass, and gives the ball away.
Away we go!
Back comes the teams...
Russia started really well, putting on the pressure all over the pitch, and exploiting nervous opponents who, let's be honest, froze. They've got a lot of work to do.
Half-time: Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia
Saudi need a proper talking to at half-time, because they've not been focused enough - there's just no excuse for how frequently and how cheaply they've given away possession. If they do't improve, they'll find themselves on the wrong end of a hiding.
There shall be two added minutes.
WHAT A GOAL! Russia 2-0 Saudi Arabia (Cheryshev) This a lovely goal! Saudi give it away again and Russia break again. When Golovin gets on the ball just outside the box, Chershev has hectares to his left. But the pass is short, so Cheryshev tips it up for himself, sending two defenders for a bag o' chips, takes another touch, and slams a rising drive into the roof at the near post. Brilliantly done!
Russia get Cheryshev on the ball down the left of the box and he comes back inside Omar suddenly - that is very nice - but not apprising a pass, he goes back outside and is crowded out.
It's gone quiet, but this is a fairly decent opener so far and way better than the first one I watched, Bulgaria v Mexico in 1986. I was, though in a great deal of mirth thanks to the name Getov.
Russia nearly get in again on the counter, Golovin knocking in behind for Smolov. Saudi have plenty of men back, but their line is higher than the sun and because they keep losing the ball via careless turnover, there's no pressure on it when whichever Russian in possession wants to pick a pass.
Nice from Saudi down the left, who're starting to pass to each other. Amazingly, that's helping them, and Yahi and Alsahlawi combine nicely, but then Russia crowd them out and break, Zobanin turning beautifully in centrefield to set Golovin away. But as he breaks into the box, Osama comes over and times his tackle perfectly. There are appeals for a penalty, but the ref immediately signals to the contrary.
Dear oh dear - Saudi just can't stop giving it away, and Omar allows the ball over his foot and out for a throw. Someone needs to remind him of his responsibilities.
There's been a definite shift in momentum, though Saudi don't look anywhere near as dangerous as Russia did in the first 20 minutes.
Saudi win a free-kick down the right, level with the corner of the box, more or less.Salman wedges into the box, and Alsahlawi heads over, forced to generate all his own pace.
Saudi are playing the game in the Russia half now, but their passing is such that I'd not surprised to see Russia score again on the break - there's a bit of a rugby union feel to this, in that one interception looks likely to result in a concession.
The game has quietened down a bit, which is good for Saudi, but then Otayf gives it away from a nifty position down the right and Cheryshev tanks forward, getting to the line and cutting back for no one. but it took two men to see him away there, and immediately after winning the ball, Saudi give it away again.
Dzagiev limps off, and Cheryshev replaces him. That's a shame - Dzagoev is a good player with good touch and vision. Cheryshev is the only member of the Russian squad who plays outside of Russia - he's at Villarreal - and he's on gone onto the lefft, with Golovin assuming the vacated number 10 position.
But here come Saudi, Yasser nashing down the left and crossing well into the middle. Alsahlawi is there with Ignashevic, who's forced to head behind; the corner is rubbish, but Saudi pick up the pieces and Alsahlawi shoots hard as the ball drops and earns a further corner. Again, it's rubbish, and Russia break ... ONLY FOR DZAGOEV TO TWANG HIS HAMSTRING! AAARRRFGGGH! That'll be his match and tournament, I'm afraid.
Zhirkov finds Golovin down the left of the box and they almost combine to create a chance.
Yasser gives it away and Samedov drives forward. He can't find a mate, but that is basically the game so far: Russia pressurising Saudi Arabia into making a mistake and having at them in the aftermath.
Saudi can't get hold of it at the moment. They need to not concede a second; there's some insight for you.
Russia are pouring it on, and make down the right again, Samedov played in to cross. He's so far offside it's ridiculous but no one bothers noticing and he cuts back for Dzagoev, who is blocked off. I think it's by Alburayk, who then receives treatment, but is quickly up and about.
We see a shot of the Saudi crown prince shaking hands with Putin. "They're doing an oil deal," says Clive Tyldesley, which I guess is better than an arms deal, yeah?
GOAL! Russia 1-0 Saudi Arabia (Gazinski) The corner is cleared, but Zobain and Golovin make an angle for another cross, close to the corner of the box. It picks out Gazinski at the back post, and he shoves Taiseer before guiding a fine header into the far corner for his first international goal!
Saudi haven't got going yet, and Zobain, breaking at inside-right, slides a pass into the stride of Dzagoev.He gathers well but shoots wide - via deflection, apparently, and that'll be another corner...
Dzagoev flicks on and Golovin attacks the outside of Alburayy before Zhirkov wins a corner ... that he overhits and then some. But Russia have started well.
Nice from Golovin who wins the ball deep inside his own half, beats one challenge and sends Dzagoev away down the left. Bereft of options, he cuts back and it ends up with Smolov down the right., He crosses well to the near post, but Omar is there to crunch clear.
Bit of pressure from Saudi, but then Tiaseer sells Abdullah short and he has to come huffing out of his goal to clear. Yasser then streaks forward from left-back and crosses - the ball passes a hand and there are shouts for a penalty, but the ref is having no such thing.
Zobanin wins Russia a corner down the left and Zhirkov - yes, it really is him - curls it towards the near post, where Osama heads clear. Quickly, the ball ends up with Akinfeev, then makes its way down to the other end, where Abdullah humps clear.
It's all Russia so far! The get the ball into Dzagoev down the right of the box, but Yasser and Omar crowd him out and Saudi get the ball clear.
Yurrrrrsssss! ITV miss the kick-off!
Interesting formation from the Saudis.
The Russia anthem is still an absolute banger. Needs a jungle remix, but still.
Yes! Time for one of my favourite things in any World Cup: footballers singing out of tune, otherwise known as the national anthems. We start with Saudi, which is short.
Gianni Infantino is now talking. I do not have time or will to relate what he is saying. Rest assured, it's whatever.
"I wish success to all the teams.." Er, not sure old Vlad has quite grasped how competition works.
Russia is an "open, hospitable , friendly company". Narrator: "Provided you aren't gay, of colour, or Jewish."
He is talking about football being loved in Russia. The World Cup is a "wonderful event" and we shall be partaking of a 'splendid football feast".
"Please welcome the president of the Russian federation, Vladimir Putin!"
Out come the players!
A heart-shaped Russian flag is run around the centre-circle. As a consequence, we have all forgotten about the warmongering, human rights violations and election interference.
The players are tunnelled!
I would not steal this couch.
That Blockbusters I was talking about...
Well that was quick, at least.
I mean seriously, Robbie Williams. In 2018!
The pitch looks like a green Blockbusters board.
And now an Angels duet. I don't know about you, but I've forgotten the unfathomable dodge and morally repugnance about everything that isn't the actual football.
Our very own looks like he may not be our very own for much longer, on account of consuming himself. He's now singing a drone the name of which I do not know. The one about free love. Which is presumably why he's performing this gig.
Behind him, and all over the show, is the usual array of humans dressed as footballs, acrobatics, fire-effect things and all the rest. "Bounce, bounce, bounce!" hollers our very own. I feel more naches than ever before in my life.
The ceremony is upon us! Out comes Ronaldo, original, and our very own Robbie Williams in red leather-effect suit. He looks a bit like couch left outside a house. Let Me Entertain You is the song he's croaking; unfortunately, I don't have a choice.
Who wants a World Cup preview? You? Why! What're the chances?
At Euro 96, England couldn't have the hotel they wanted because Germany had already booked it. They are brilliant.
Uruguay are Ian Wright's dark horses, while Slaven Bilic talks about Croatia, and that his team did well in 1998 because the keeper made saves and Suker scored six goals. Croatia have good players this time too, but are in a tough group, and I wonder if Modric, good though he is, is just a little bit past his best.
Back in the studio, the patter is about foreign players in England. Slaven Bilic says the competition is good for young British types, and I agree. Who are the stellar talents we've missed out on developing since the influx of imports?
And the favourite Saudi Arabia goal...
A favourite Russia World Cup goal...
Elsewhere in Group A, Hector Cuper has said Mohamed Salah is almost certain to start Egypt's opener against Uruguay. Sergio Ramos' relief is palpable.
Eric Dier has had a buzz-cut for the occasion. He looks well scary now, I can tell you. Somewhere in Cheshire, Ander Herrera is trembling.
The panel - Neville G, Wright, Dixon, Bilic - prefer Rashford to Sterling in the England side. I'm inclined to agree, if Rashford is thought to be hot, given the creativity of Alli and Lingard in midfield, but I see both sides.
"He gets a lot of stick for a load of rubbish," says Ian Wright. Quite.
We're watching some VT about Raheem Sterling, who is sort of from my endz. His ability to perform amid the noise - and let's be real, racist noise - from the gutter press is remarkable.
Mark Clattenburg, then. Who doesn't need a three-piece syoot and kerchief to sit in an "analysis truck"? Yes, we're back talking about VAR. I cannot grasp why any adult wants the buzz of celebrating a goal ruined, and can't let a bad decision, in a game of football go once the game is over. Here's a piece sort of about that.
The World Cup has been removed from a box. It is fit as.
They are 100 percent brown. I'm going to go out on a limb here: brown shoes are never, ever acceptable, in any context. Don't @ me.
Ryan Giggs is wearing a black blazer, a navy shirt and cream throuser with belt hook but no belt. It is a phenomenal quantity of noooooooo and we can't even see his shoes.
So, who's going to win it? The way I see it, the settled sides are Brazil, Germany and Belgium. Spain were there, but no longer, I don't trust Belgium to win a succession of big games, and Germany don't have a transcendental player. If France had a serious manager, I'd be going with them, but they don't have anything close, and for that reason, Lord Sugar, I am going with Brazil.
Gary Neville is pleased that Spain fired Lopategui; I'm not sure what the point of it was, and how it benefits the team, regardless of whether it makes the syoots feel powerful.
The coverage starts by referencing the political awfulness of dis ting, open a discussion about it the start talking about football.
Talking about the opening ceremony, Mark Pougatch literally just used the phrase "Our very own Robbie Williams". I for one feel extremely proud.
ITV's credits, then. They're going for Moscow State Circus theme, which will ring a bell with 1980s Blue Peter alumni. It wasn't great, I'm afraid. But Red Square looks amazing, just like Tetris.
HERE WE EXPLETIVE GO!
Aaaaaaarrrrggghhhh! It is upon us! Happy holidays, football mubarak, chag sameakh and merry World Cup! After four long, lonesome years, now we are whole again.
So what of Russia v Saudi Arabia? Well, he said, answering his own question, Russia are not very good. They haven't won in seven games and weren't great before that, so face a struggle to get out of this group, which has neither greatness nor drek. Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, have run both Germany and Italy close recently, and won't role over today. But the reality is that Russians and Saudis aside, no one really cares because what's to care about? The World Cup is here!