Despite its relative struggles of late, Spain wasn’t exactly a welcome sight as the first elimination-round opponent for the 2018 World Cup host nation. But Russia was going to have to face a global juggernaut at some point in the tournament, and it was up to the task in the round of 16. Russia pulled off a shocking upset of Spain on Sunday with a victory in penalty kicks, 1-1 (3-4).
Igor Akinfeev was Russia’s hero after saving two penalties in a shoot-out to sensationally dump Spain out of the World Cup and book the hosts a place in the quarter-finals after a 1-1 draw in Moscow.
Koke and Iago Aspas were denied by the Russia goalkeeper as 2010 champions Spain, who dominated possession without creating clear chances, were defeated 4-3 on penalties.
Sergei Ignashevich became the oldest scorer of an own goal in World Cup history when the 38-year-old gave Spain an early lead at the Luzhniki Stadium.
A right-wing Isco cross isolated Ignashevich and Sergio Ramos at the back post, the Russia defender turning the ball home via his heel as he desperately tried to block his opponent’s run.
But Russia drew level in the 41st minute, Artem Dzyuba smashing home a penalty after his header was blocked by Gerard Pique’s arm in the box.
A stodgy Spain could not break the hosts down and were denied a penalty following a VAR review in extra-time, sending the tie to a shoot-out.
Akinfeev saved a terrible Koke penalty to put Russia in control and with David de Gea unable to stop any of the four kicks he faced, Aspas’ effort was brilliantly blocked by the goalkeeper to spark chaotic celebrations.
Score by :
- Ignashevich 12″ own goal
Artem Dzyuba 41″ Penalty
Andres Iniesta 1 – 1 Fedor Smolov
Gerard Pique 2 – 2 Sergei Ignashevich
Koke 2 (missed) – 3 Aleksandr Golovin
Sergio Ramos 3 – 4 Denis Cheryshev
Iago Aspas (missed) 3 – 4
Ignashevich (own goal )
Artem Dzyuba (Penalty)