Russia vs Saudi Arabia
Kick Off: 14th June 2018| 16:00 CET
Group A Round 1 | Luzhiniki Stadium
Back the hosts to open the tournament in style
The hosts start their World Cup campaign against Saudi Arabia, and the home fans expect their men to hit the ground running in good fashion. These two teams are the clear underdogs of group A, which also includes Egypt and Uruguay, but Russia can count on home advantage, and they are the better side tactically in this encounter.
Russia’s poor form, however, is worrying despite facing high calibre sides. A 1-0 loss to Argentina later last year was followed by a draw with Spain, then three consecutive losses to Brazil, France, and Austria.
The Saudis have beaten Algeria and Greece in friendlies before losing to Italy and Peru. That said, they can face the struggling hosts with some confidence and hope to win their first match ever in this tournament. I still see their winless run continuing here.