The mighty Russians fail to make a major impact against minnows New Zealand as they score just 2 past them…..
FIFA has made great effort to modify every rule and law so that every football match in the world has the most amounts of goals scored. Russia doesn’t seem to believe in this precept and have hardly ever scored more than 2 goals in international competitions often resulting in miserable results and group stage exits. Except in 2008 Euro Championships, Russia haven’t been comfortable in front of goal and have lacked the bite required to be a free-scoring team. Their biggest win in a FIFA or UEFA tournament has come against Cameroon where they won 6-1, but that was in the World cup of 1994.
To have a good impact in any major tournament, let alone win it, a team needs to win games and win them big. Russia has often lacked goal-scorers who could perform on the biggest stages. And now that they lack the likes of Andrey Arshavin at the ongoing Confederations Cup, it seems to be more difficult than ever. He often was the focal point of their attack especially during the Russian team’s hay day at the Euro 2008. And he did score some wonderful goals. But now that he is missing, the attack seems almost toothless. They although seem to have a small ray of hope in the form of Aleksander Golovin, their attack-minded midfielder and Feydor Smolov, their main striker.
Having won their first match of the Confederation Cup 2-0 against minnows New Zealand thanks to goals from Boxall and Smolov, they need to build on this in order to sound the warning bells for the big-wigs of world football. Without a prolific goal-scoring striker, it is often difficult for teams to survive and Russia needs to improve in this department by leaps and bounds.
Even against New Zealand, who are currently ranked 95 in the world, Russia found it difficult to navigate their way to the back of the net. Missing numerous occasions to simply put the ball in the net, shown by just 2 goals from nearly 19 shots they had clearly shown that they still have a lot of work to do.
Simply put, either find a way to score goals or bow out of the major tournaments with your tail between your legs. There is no alternative option in Russia’s hand as they hope to make a major impact at the global arena of football and make their presence felt.