The host nation humbled as Uruguay beats Russia 3-0
Uruguay 3 (Suarez 10’, Cheryshev 23’ og, Cavani 90’)
By Charlie Johns
Uruguay has given the host nation a reality check as it defeated Russia 3-0 in the final group match which saw Edinson Cavani score his first World Cup goal in his 103rd appearance for his country.
Uruguay has now gone through the group stage without conceding a goal.
— FIFA World Cup ???? (@FIFAWorldCup) June 25, 2018
Although both teams were already guaranteed a spot in the round-of-16, the opening exchanges were played with some intensity as numerous fouls were committed
It was one of those fouls that led to the first goal when Luis Suarez was brought down on the edge of the penalty area. He picked himself up and bent the free kick around the Russian wall, beyond the reach of keeper Akinfeev and into the bottom right corner.
Unfortunately for the Russians their own player helped in tipping the scales in Uruguay’s favour.
A long-range attempt by Uruguayan winger Diego Laxalt cannoned into Denis Cheryshev’s legs and deflected in to the net, leaving Akinfeev stranded.
It went from bad to worse for Russia in just the 36th minute when Igor Smolnikov, who was already on a yellow card, hacked down Laxalt to receive a second yellow and his marching orders from the referee.
Ten-man Russia fought bravely despite the weight of possession in Uruguay’s favour.
They held on until the 90th minute when Diego Godin rose to meet a corner and although Akinfeev was able to parry the header, Cavani was on hand to knock the loose ball into the net.
Uruguay finished top of Group A and will meet the runner-up of Group B in the round-of-16, while Russia as the group runner-up will play the winner of Group B.
Uruguay: 1 Muslera (GK), 3 Godin (c), 6 Bentancur (63’), 8 Nandez (73’), 9 Suarez, 14 Torreira, 15 Vecino, 17 Laxalt, 19 Coates, 21 Cavani (93’), 22 Caceres
Substitutes: 4 Varela, 5 Sanchez, 7 Rodriguez (73’), 10 De Arrascaeta (63’), 11 Stuani, 12 Campana, 13 G. Silva, 16 Pereira, 18 Gomez (93’), 20 Urretaviscaya, 23 M. Silva, 2 Gimenez
Russia: 1 Akinfeev (GK) (c), 3 Kutepov, 4 Ignashevich, 6 Cheryshev (38’), 8 Gazinskii (46’), 11 Zobnin, 13 Kurdiashov, 15 Al Miranchuk (66’), 19 Samedov, 22 Dzyuba, 23 Smolnikov
Substitutes: 2 Fernandes (38’), 5 Semenov, 7 Kuiaev (46’), 10 Smolov (66’), 12 Lunev, 14 Granat, 16 An Miranchuk, 17 Golovin, 18 Zhirkov, 20 Gabulov, 21 Erokhin, 9 Dzagoev