Russian Federation stun Spain 4-3 on penalties to reach World Cup quarters

Russian Federation stun Spain 4-3 on penalties to reach World Cup quarters

Russian Federation stun Spain 4-3 on penalties to reach World Cup quarters

Barring two goals - an own-goal off Sergey Ignashevich which Ramos rather petulantly celebrates as his own, and a penalty conceded by Gerard Pique which brings Russian Federation level - it's a tedious standoff between an ineffectual tiki-taka and a dogged resistance.

Russian Federation will have the support of most of the 80,000 fans at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium, and Cheryshev is hoping the team can deliver a performance they will remember.

That was the last drama of extra time and with thunderstorms providing a fittingly dramatic soundtrack, the match went all the way to penalties.

"Thank God, we were lucky, that's it", goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev said after he stopped two Spanish penalties, the second with his trailing foot as he dived away from Iago Aspas' strike.

For the second time Russian Federation advance to the World Cup quarter-finals.

The defeat also marked the end a of glittering global career for Andres Iniesta, who was brought on midway through the second half for his 131st and final Spain appearance. It was the fifth time in a row a World Cup host nation has won a penalty shootout, Federation Internationale de Football Association said.

Without their talisman, who had single-handedly destroyed Manchester City and Roma in the quarter-finals and semi-finals to set up a showdown with Real Madrid in Kiev, Liverpool lost the match 3-1, with Ramos lifting the trophy for a third successive season.

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Aspas and Koke missed their penalties and Spain were done and dusted. Turmoil erupted two days before the opening game, when the federation fired the head coach. What Ramos says to Akinfeev no-one knows.

Artem Dzyuba, the lone center forward whose thankless task it was to try and punish Spain on Russia's few breaks, was considerably less restrained: "We are insanely happy", he said.

"Andres Iniesta, his last game probably, for Barcelona, for Spain, now going to Japan".

Rodrigo almost won it five minutes later, when he beat his man with a dummy, sprinted into the box and fired a shot Akinfeev again did well to save. Pique headed a chance into Akinfeev's arms with the last action of the first half of extra time. Dzyuba stepped up with confidence and dispatched the spot kick beyond David de Gea for an unlikely equaliser. "We believed that order, discipline and dedication can beat class".

The hosts showed their intent as Cheryshev was introduced in place of Aleksandr Samedov to a great reception from the crowd inside the Luzhniki Stadium.

Watch the full penalty shootout.

"The fact that the whole country is proud of us is the most important thing", added Dzyuba, who scored from the penalty spot just before halftime to cancel out an early own goal.

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