Uruguay trounce Russia 3-0, top Group A
Samara [Russia], June 25: Uruguay ran out comfortable winners against Russia at the Samara Arena as goals from star strikers Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani and an own goal from Denis Cheryshev helped beat the hosts 3-0 and consolidate top spot in Group A.
Being one of the surprise packages of the World Cup so far with eight goals scored in two wins from two games, it was certainly not beyond Russia to get a point or three against Uruguay and finish top of their group.
However, Uruguay brought them back to earth within 10 minutes, as Barcelona striker Luis Suarez squeezed in a low free kick from just outside the box into Igor Akinfeev’s left to establish the South American side’s lead.
Russia were pegged back again, 13 minutes later when their top scorer in the tournament Cheryshev ended up on the wrong side of the score sheet. A clearance from a corner went only as far as Diego Laxalt, whose shot at goal took a wicked deflection from the ex-Real Madrid winger and nestled in the back of the net.
Their misery was further compounded at the 38-minute mark as Igor Smolnikov was given his marching orders with his second yellow card of the game for a foul on Laxalt.
This allowed Uruguay more space and time in the second half as they dominated proceedings, with Fernando Muslera’s goal unthreatened for the most part.
That was until the Galatasaray keeper’s sloppy pass allowed Artem Dzyuba to get inside the box with a great opportunity at the 74th minute to half the deficit; however the 29-year old only managed to skewer his shot wide.
Cavani soon wasted a presentable chance to score his first goal in the World Cup, however, he failed to get at the end of a one-two with strike partner Suarez.
He wouldn’t be kept off the score sheet for long though, as a Diego Godin header was parried away by Akinfeev, with Cavani Johnny-on-the-spot to convert from point-blank range.
With his goal, he became only the second Uruguayan player in history to score in three different World Cup Finals, the other being his partner Suarez. Uruguay also became the first team to finish the group stage without conceding a single goal since Argentina in 1998.
Tonight’s result in the Group B fixtures will decide the opponents for Uruguay and Russiain the next round, with Spain set to face off against the already eliminated Morocco, and Iran’s encounter against Portugal set to decide the other qualifying spot.