Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Russian Federation eases to 2-0 Confederations Cup win over New Zealand

Russian Federation eases to 2-0 Confederations Cup win over New Zealand

Russian Federation take on New Zealand in St. Petersburg in the first match of the eight-nation Confederations Cup on a pitch that had to be hastily relaid after football officials deplored its quality when it cut up badly during a match there in April.

On Sunday, Portugal and Mexico face off from Group A while Chile and Cameroon are playing each other from Group B. "It allowed us to play", Cherchesov said.

Russia's win certainly eased the pressure on winning its second game, against Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal in Moscow on Wednesday.

World champions Germany and the champions from FIFA's six confederations, including Australia, are competing in the two-week tournament that will allow Russian Federation to test its football infrastructure in four of the 11 cities hosting World Cup matches.

Russian Federation deserved its first-half lead after twice having shots stopped on the line in the opening 10 minutes.

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Scoring chances came early for Russian Federation, playing with confidence and unexpected flair, a powerful header by defender Viktor Vasin bouncing off the inside of the post before being cleared by New Zealand's Michael McGlinchey.

New Zealand, meanwhile, were finding it tough to hold maintain possession of the ball, which led to a lack of chances.

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

After clashes between Russian and England fans tarnished the European championship, President Vladimir Putin approved legislation which allows authorities to hand out tougher punishment for violence at sporting events.

We played the match we have been planning for. It came off some lovely passing from the hosts, with Glushakov lifting the ball over the goalkeeper and off the right post while a insane scramble at that post took place. The president prefers ice hockey and saw a team that carried fervent hopes of an Olympic title lose on home ice in the quarterfinals at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. The competition serves as a warm-up for the World Cup, played out a year before the sport's largest event.

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