Another major surprise occurred in FIFA World Cup 2018 when one of the tournament favorites, Spain saw themselves leaving the tournament rather early after being eliminated by host nation, Russia.
It was poised to be a tactical battle from the start with La Furia Roja were keen on having most of the possession, while Sbornaya were playing more on the counter.
Things looking promising for Fernando Hierro’s men early on as they found themselves leading after just 12 minutes through an own goal from Sergey Ignashevich.
Trailing by one goal didn’t lower Russia’s confidence as they keep trying hard to push forward, though mostly from counter attacking game as Spain remain strong on possession.
The home team’s spirited counter proved to be successful during that 45 minutes as just before half time break they were able to get back on level terms from Artem Dzyuba’s perfect penalty kick.
In the second period, both teams still keeping their first half approach, though Hierro’s side tried to be more aggressive, especially in the last 15-20 minutes of that game.
However, none of Spain’s efforts were successful as Russia hanging on well to keep that 1-1 score line until normal time ended and basically forcing that match to go into 2 x 15 extra time.
During extra time, Stanislav Cherchesov’s side continue to play more defensive, while Spain pouring forward vigorously in search for that precious winning goal.
Unfortunately for La Furia Roja their attempts were fruitless as no more goals were scored until the final whistle was blown and penalty shoot out was needed to decide the winner.
Eventually, Russia came out on top as none of their four shooters missed, while Spain had two of their penalty takers failed to do their job.
The missed from Koke and notably Iago Aspas, who was picked as the fifth taker, simply put tons of disappointment for La Furia Roja, as they saw their World Cup dream ending rather early once again.