- End of 2nd Half
- 2nd Half
- 1st Half
- Boxall (o.g.)31'
Russia - New Zealand
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FULL-TIME: Hosts Russia secure victory on the opening day of the Confederations Cup. Michael Boxall's own-goal on 31 minutes broke the deadlock before Fedor Smolov doubled the advantage in the second-half.
Two additional minutes to play at the end of the second half.
- OffFedor SmolovRussia
- OnAleksey MiranchukRussia
Russia sub: Alexey Miranchuk comes off the bench to replace Smolov.
A deep cross is played into the path of Zhirkov but Boxall nips in at the crucial time to bundle it out for a corner.
After a couple of minutes of New Zealand dominance, the hosts are back in the ascendancy and pushing for a third goal.
A delicious ball from Smolov who finds space down the left, but none of his team mates can get onto the end of it! Meanwhile, New Zealand make a final change: Monty Patterson replacing Colvey.
A little complacency is perhaps creeping into Russia's game. Can New Zealand find a consolation? There's little over 10 minutes to play.
OFF THE LINE!
New Zealand's corner. Smith is left unmarked and heads it towards goal. But it's hacked off the line by Kudryashov.
Finally, New Zealand have a chance. It's a long distance effort from Thomas which tests the alertness of Akinfeev but the experienced Russian goalkeeper does well to force it out for a corner.
- OffAleksandr ErokhinRussia
- OnDmitri TarasovRussia
Russia make their second change of the match - Dmitri Tarasov is brought on for Erokshin.
After a torrid Euro 2016 campaign, this is exactly the result Russia need to kick off their Confederations Cup. Can they go all the way? With Mexico and Portugal still to play in Group A, it's going to be difficult. But this is the best start Stanislav Cherchesov could have asked for.
POSSESSION: Russia 60% - New Zealand 40%.
Meanwhile, Shane Smeltz replaces Rojaz for New Zealand.
Here it is...
- GoalFedor SmolovRussia
GOAL! Russia doubled their advantage!
It's a simple tap-in for the top goalscorer of the Russian domestic league, Fedor Smolov. It was the Russian forward who started the move. He fed Samedov on the wing and the full-back delivered a low ball across the face of goal. It was missed by the New Zealand defenders and the clinical striker punishes them.
Here's footage of Russia's opener. Feels like a long time ago now.
A nicely worked team move from Russia picks out Samedov in an advanced position on the channel. He tries to pick out a team mate with a ball to the near post but Smith is in the right place to clear.
Russia have been by far superior, but the longer the score-line remains 1-0, the more nervous the hosts will grow.
- OffDmitri PolozRussia
- OnAleksandr BukharovRussia
Now it's Russia's turn to make a change in personnel - Aleksander Bukharov takes the place of the impressive Poloz.
Samedov lines the ball up, 20 yards from goal. He curls the effort over the wall but also over the bar. Close.
- OffKosta BarbarousesNew Zealand
- OnBill TuilomaNew Zealand
The stoppage will allow New Zealand to make their first change of the match - Bill Tuiloma replacing Barbarouses.
Samedov gets down the right before sending a low cross into the New Zealand penalty area. The visitors half clear. The loose ball is gathered by Golovin who is fouled before he is able to shoot.
The energetic Golovin finds a pocket of space 25 yards out and decides to shoot. But it's well over the bar. The Russian playmaker has been OK today. Much more to come from him in the remaining half an hour, I'm sure.
The Kiwis are still playing with a ridiculously high-line but again, it frustrates Russia. A chipped through ball releases Smolov but he's in an offside position.
Scenes which will delight the Russians.
Russia go close once more. Golovin charges forward with team mates either side. He feeds Poloz whose curled effort is tipped away by Marinovic and a New Zealand defender then makes a desperate clearance under pressure.
That chance aside, it's been a rather scrappy opening in the second half.
Question marks have been raised over Marinovic throughout the match, but he has just made two excellent saves to keep New Zealand in the match. First, he did brilliantly to claw away Poloz's bullet header. Then he gathered himself to push away Erokhin's effort from the rebound.
What a ridiculous thing to write... it doesn't change the score?! Who would have ever thought it would?!
- 2nd Half
We're underway in the second-half.
Russia were completely dominant in the first-half and deservedly lead through Michael Boxall's own-goal on 31 minutes. The hosts also struck the post and saw the ball cleared off the New Zealand line.
- End of 1st Half
HALF-TIME: Russia 1-0 New Zealand.
One additional minute to be played at the end of the first-half.
Samedov's cross strikes the back of Thomas and out for a corner.... oh, no wait, the referee signals for a goal-kick and New Zealand can count themselves fortunate.
Bozall bundles Zhirkov off the ball on the channel and concedes a soft free-kick. Russia have a chance to swing a cross into the danger area now.
Poloz is released AGAIN... but he's flagged offside AGAIN! Sooner or later he is going to break New Zealand's offside trap.
WIDE... BUT ONLY JUST!
It's a cheeky effort from Smolov. Two defenders stand off him, allowing the Russian forward to curl a shot towards goal. It's only inches wide though.
A fantastic sliding tackle from Zhirkov on Colvey prevents the New Zealand full-back from going any further on the channel.
Poloz is constantly playing on the shoulder of the New Zealand defence, and that's causing problems for the visitors. However, they're let off the hook once more as the Russian forward makes his run a split second too soon.
He's happy. Russia are happy.
Russia are hungry for more as the hosts force another corner, their fifth of the game.
- Own-goalMichael BoxallNew Zealand
GOAL! Russia finally have the lead.
Glushakov, the Russian Footballer of the Year, scores the opening goal of the Confederations Cup. It's a deserved lead for Russia who have been completely dominant.
Erokhin pokes the ball through to Poloz whose flick-on releases Glushakov and he lifts the ball over the New Zealand goalkeeper.
A delightful through pass releases Smolov behind the New Zealand defence, and the Russian forward makes no mistake as he slides the ball into the back of the net. There's outrage as the linesman had his flag up. It was the correct decision, but there wasn't in it.
Finally, New Zealand manage to string three or four passes together. But there's frustration as Rojas return pass to Wynne is overplayed and goes out for a throw-in.
The space opens up for Dzhikiya who says 'why not' and tries a shot from 25 yards. The New Zealand goalkeeper doesn't seem up to much and again he makes life difficult for himself by parrying the low and weak effort out for a corner.
Plenty of empty seats in St Petersburg for today's opener. That's pretty disappointing, considering Russia haven't had a competitive match in a year.
Good link-up play from New Zealand's front three but the move breaks down. The loose ball falls to Wood who tries a first-time shot from 25 yards but he shoots well over the bar.
Russia launch a lightning quick counter-attack with Zhirkov running at speed down the left. He fizzes in a cross but it's too close to Marinovic who punches it clear. If I'm being critical, the New Zealand goalkeeper probably should have caught that.
Disappointing. It's a long run from Woods but he fires it low and hard and it takes a deflection. New Zealand win a corner but it's played straight into the arms of Akinfeev, who is making his 99th appearance for his country today.
Thomas goes flying down the left-hand channel before he is fouled, just on the edge of the penalty area. New Zealand are dangerous from set-pieces, so lets see what happens here...
A routine long ball isn't dealt with by the New Zealand defence and suddenly Poloz is through in the clear. He tries to round the goalkeeper Marinovic but is caught. It looks like a stone-wall penalty but the referee signals play on!
New Zealand have plenty of height in their squad and set-pieces may just be their best opportunity of scoring today. And it's from a free-kick where they create their first chance. The ball is hammered towards Woods whose flick-on finds Smith but the Ipswich Town man can't keep his shot down.
Just how the opening 10 minutes hasn't yielded a goal is quite beyond me. Russia are absolutely dominant.
OFF THE LINE!
A lovely cross finds Poloz at the back post. He takes a clever touch and pokes it through the legs of the out-stretched goalkeeper but Smith is in the right place to clear just before it crosses the line.
OFF THE POST!
Russia win their third corner of the game. It's another great delivery from Samedov as his cross picks out the unmarked Dzhikiya. His headed effort hits the post and rolls across the line before McGlinchey hammers it clear.
Samedov curls the ball into the All White's penalty box but it's headed clear by the visitors.
Russia win another corner. New Zealand haven't been able to get out of their own half as of yet.
The visitors can only partially clear from the corner. Russia work the ball back into the danger zone where Smolov heads over the bar. The hosts have made a bright start.
It's Russia who are first to land a shot on target, with Golovin launching a rocket from 25 yards. Marinovic's save is far from convincing as he punches it awkwardly away from goal and out for a corner.
Russia, making their debut in the Confederations Cup, are playing in red. New Zealand are in white.
- 1st Half
KICK-OFF: We're off! There's an impressive atmosphere within the St Petersburg stadium for the start of the match.
It's time for the National Anthems...
STAT! In all competitions, New Zealand have won only one of their last eight matches against UEFA teams (W1-D4-L3), 1-0 in a friendly against Serbia on 29 May 2010 (Shane Smeltz scored the only goal)
DID YOU KNOW? This will be the first meeting between Russia and New Zealand, the champions of Oceania, in the post-Soviet era. The USSR beat New Zealand 3-0 at the 1982 World Cup in Spain.
The curse of the Confederations Cup?
ANTHONY HUDSON PRE-MATCH COMMENTS
“We want to go there, not just to take part, we want to go there and really do something significant,.
“Our ranking is what it is, that’s down to the state of where we’ve been over the last three years, although we have been very good recently.”
The other teams in Group A are the formidable footballing nations of Mexico and Portugal, so you have to say today represents New Zealand's most realistic chance of a victory.
Leeds United striker Chris Wood was in prolific form last season, and the All Whites, led by Englishman Anthony Hudson, will need the centre forward in top form to have any success in this tournament.
Meanwhile, the All Whites are appearing at the Confederations Cup for the fourth time, although they have yet to earn a victory in the eight-team competition, losing all but one of their nine matches.
However, New Zealand have a great opportunity of returning to Russia next summer for the World Cup. If they can find a way past the Solomon Islands, they will advance to the inter-confederation play-offs.
STANISLAV CHERCHESOV PRE-MATCH COMMENTS
"We're ready to face a likeable New Zealand team but we expect a difficult match (on Saturday).
"For us it's a privilege and honour to represent our country. Our team welcomes Russia's president watching our matches.
"And we naturally want to achieve better results than our team showed recently."
These opening ceremonies are usually worse than terrible. Let's just get this one out of the way and pray that the actual football match is a little better.
Cherchesov has had mixed results since taking over from Leonid Slutsky after a disappointing Euro 2016 campaign. He has yielded three wins but also drawn and lost the same number, including a humiliating 2-1 defeat to Qatar.
But now it's almost a year to the day until the start of the World Cup, and Russia couldn't have asked for a better way to prepare for the finals on their home soil than hosting the Confederations Cup; a competition known as the 'Tournament of Champions'.
Russian President Vladimir Putin will be among the guests for today's opener; a game in which Russia coach Stanislav Cherchesov takes charge of his side for the first time in a competitive match. He will be joined by FIFA boss Gianni Infantino at Saint Petersburg's purpose-built World Cup 68,000-seater stadium.
NEW ZEALAND TEAM NEWS
Starting XI: Marinovic; Durante, Bozall, Colvey, Wynne; Rojas, Smith, McGlinchey, Thomas; Wood, Barbarouses.
RUSSIA TEAM NEWS
Starting XI: Akinfeev; Kudrjasov, Vasin, Djikia, Zhirkov; Samedov, Glushakov; Golovin, Erokhin, Poloz; Smolov.
Hello and welcome to Eurosport's LIVE text commentary of the opening match of the Confederations Cup at the Krestovsky Stadium between the hosts Russia and New Zealand.
Kick-off is at 16:00, team news to follow in a second.