Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Russia Finally Ran Into A Good Team And Got Exposed

Illustration for article titled Russia Finally Ran Into A Good Team And Got Exposed
Photo: Stu Forster (Getty)

If you were annoyed by the plaudits this seemingly mediocre Russia team received after their admittedly impressive, high-scoring victories over absolute joke teams like Saudi Arabia and Egypt at the start of the World Cup, then you must’ve loved seeing Uruguay bust up on the vile Ruskies in today’s 3-0 thrashing.

The match got off to a great start in the eyes of Uruguay fans and Russia haters when Luis Suárez scored from a free kick just 10 minutes in. It was a wicked kick by Suárez that nonetheless probably should’ve been saved, which made it all the better because HAHA RUSSIA’S KEEPER IS A CLOWN:


Russia’s Denis Cheryshev did get a goal about 15 minutes after Suárez’s, which might’ve sucked but was actually great because it was an own goal that only added to the humiliation of the rapidly exposed paper tigers of Russia:

Russia probably wanted to make it to halftime without another big hit to their chances, and while they didn’t give up a third goal before the break, Igor Smolnikov did walk himself into two stupid yellow cards in less than 10 minutes, getting himself sent off like a big dummy and all but ending Russia’s hopes of getting a result in this match. Russia fought respectably to get back into the match in the second half, but they never really made Uruguay sweat. After knocking on the door a few times, Uruguay finally got their third goal through Edinson Cavani in the 90th minute:


To be fair, Russia genuinely did look pretty good in their first two matches of the tournament. They were more lively in attack than most expected, and did what a good team should do against inferior competition: crush them. However, beating up on Saudi Arabia and Egypt was never much indication of Russia’s true ability because any respectable team should be able to whip up on those guys. And seeing Russia get all chesty about their boys as if they were real contenders or something because they managed to run over a team full of players almost no one had ever even heard of in their first match was annoying, so their long-awaited comeuppance today was a treat.

The Uruguay-Russia match was a big deal because it determined which team would finish first in the group and thus which team would most likely face either Spain or Portugal in the next round. But even more important than knockout round positioning, this match clarified in our own rankings that Russia should definitely be counted amongst the frauds.

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