Confederations Cup Kicks Off In Russia One Year Ahead Of World Cup
- Author: Rosalie Stanley Jun 18, 2017,
Jun 18, 2017, 1:33
The FIFA Confederations Cup is now taking place in Russian Federation and among the eight participating nations in what is seen as a dress rehearsal for next year's World Cup are a host of talented players who will be familiar to Bundesliga fans.
The opponent of the home team is New Zealand.
In their place, 53-year-old Cherchesov has put his faith in exciting young talent such as CSKA Moscow midfielder Aleksandr Golovin, 21, Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Aleksey Miranchuk, also 21, and Spartak Moscow defender Georgy Dzhikya, 23.
The Soviet Union took the honours in that game by defeating New Zealand 3-0.
The first game will be played against Russian Federation and New Zealand.
Host Russia were clearly the better side as they missed a handful of chances, but the three points was all that matters. "We want to beat these teams and we are going to set out to do that".
The underdogs will rely on striker Chris Wood to lead what has been a defensive squad.
The Leeds United frontman was the top scorer in England's second-tier championship last season, and has bagged 19 goals in 48 appearances for his country.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino said: "The work that has been carried out in FIFA World Cup qualifier matches in all confederations will now also be implemented for the first time in a FIFA tournament".
For Russia, who kick off the tournament against New Zealand, a good performance if not the title is expected as the national team continues its overhaul with a new generation of players following a poor Euro 2016. Twenty years later in 2015, they played Liechtenstein, which ended in the same scoreline. The tournament will test the country's ability ahead of the mega event. This is the first meeting on the global stage between the two countries. Coach Joachim Low defended his selections last week, saying that the focus remains on winning the World Cup next year and that players must have time to rest.
"Reflecting on them, it's good that the mistakes we are making have come out now and we have a good opportunity to fix them for this first game".
Russia, who are ranked 63rd in FIFA's global rankings, have been plagued with injuries and at least five players have been ruled out of the tournament. In New Zealand, the match will be streamed on Sky Go NZ, and while the match isn't being shown online in Russian Federation, you can find viewing options for other countries by checking out LiveSoccerTV.