Russia had popped out the surprise of the world cup when it sent Spain home after the Penalty shootout kicks with a score of 4-3.
After the match between Spain and Russia ended with a draw of 1 to 1 between the two teams, in both real and extra time, the shootout kicks were the surprising winning the card that sent Russia to the quarter finals. Spain, the world cup winner of 2010, has failed to maintain ball possession and lost many chances to score in front of the Russian team who depended heavily on the defense technique.
The great Matador has fallen as a victim against the team of the hosting country for the 2018 world cup. This is the fourth time for Span to lose in front of the hosting country in a world cup, after Italy, Brazil and North Korea.
Russia credits its winning to its goalkeeper, Igor Akinfeev, who kept the goal safe from two shootout kicks from the Spanish koke and Iago Aspas, which made the Spanish team the third world cup champion who is sent home after Germany, the four times winner of world cup, and also the latest winner, and Argentina, the two times winner of the world cup.
This is the first time for Russia to reach the quarter finals of the world cup since the Soviet union has been disassembled, taking into consideration that it is also the first time for Russia to be qualified to the second round since its participation in the united states world cup back in 1994.
The game did not see many goals due to the fact that the Russian team condensed in their region and the Spanish team adopted the technique of passing the ball around to create spaces and possess the ball. They preferred to maintain ball possession rather than attack. This technique allowed the Russian team to play a penalty attack that made them level the field and change the game to a draw.
The extra time of the game ended with this draw and the two teams have resorted to shoot out kicks. In those kicks, both koke and Iago Aspas have missed two major kicks for Spain; the Russian goalkeeper shut those attempts in a magnificent way. For the Russian team, the players Fyodor Smolov, Sergie Ignashevich, Aleksandr Golovin and Denis Cheryshev were the ones who scored the kicks for Russia, carrying them all the way to quarter finals, increasing the chance for the host country to win the whole thing.