Russian Federation dominate New Zealand in Confederations Cup opener

Russian Federation dominate New Zealand in Confederations Cup opener

Russian Federation dominate New Zealand in Confederations Cup opener

Mexico head into Sunday's clash having drawn 1-1 with the US in their latest World Cup qualifier, although prior to that they earned comfortable victories over Honduras in a qualifying game and Ireland in a friendly, winning 3-0 and 3-1 respectively.

Putin this week demanded better results from the 63rd-ranked team to impress the Russian public. But it will be against Portugal, rather than Anthony Hudson's All Whites, that a truer picture of Russia's prospects will emerge when they meet in Moscow on Wednesday.

The game was played at the newly-built 57,000-seat capacity St. Petersburg Stadium and tonight's attendance of the match totalled over 50,200.

Now sitting in pole position to qualify for the 2018 World Cup Finals, Mexico are one of only two nations in this group who can be confident of a return to Russian Federation in 12 months time.

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Another big and the only big game of this year will begin with the Battle of All Whites vs Russian Federation. "They're genuine friends, and you don't often get that in a football team".

"No one explained the reasons for this", Shprygin told Reuters before adding that he knew of other cases of last-minute cancellations. The sight of 33-year-old Yury Zhirkov powering down the left flank for 90 minutes, combined with the energy of the greying Alexander Samedov, 32, emphasised the spirit within the team, if not the youth.

"When the president of your country comes out to make a speech this mobilizes us", said coach Stanislav Cherchesov, a former goalkeeper who played for the national team before and after the fall of communism. Tommy Smith then tidied up when Poloz poked a close-range shot slowly past Marinovic.

Smolov had an effort ruled out for offside before the opening goal arrived just after the half-hour mark.

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Ronaldo has scored 12 goals in six global outings since coming off injured in the Euro final, but Mexico - winners of the Confederations Cup in 1999 - are confident they can stop him. "I have the same confidence today", Portugal coach Fernando Santos said earlier this week.

"We do not see any big problems here", said Mukto, who heads the World Cup organizing committee.

In the pre-match press conference, Osorio showed respect for Portugal, but also warned of his own team's attacking prowess. Check the confirmed playing XI of the Chris Wood's team here. They were full of running, were sharp and quick. They never sulked, and when we needed them, they were there!

"It is the first step to the English Premier League now", Cherchesov said in English as he looked across to his also-smiling forward at a news conference.

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