Spain vs Russia (Round of 16)

After a rather tame capitulations in the first set of matches of the knockout phase, this was a humdinger… The only possibility that Russia (70th ranked) could hope for to defeat Spain (10th ranked and outright favourite) was to ensure that they won the lottery. And boy, did they do it and how…

The famous Spanish tiki-taka was brought to a standstill by a rather determined and iron-clad Russian defense. In fact, over a thousand passes and two hours of play later, Spain could never hit the back of the net. Russia seemed to be playing solely for the penalty shootouts. Even in that, La Roja had some previous experience in shootouts whereas it was a new territory for the Russians playing in their home ground. And when Akinfeev denied Koke first and then Iago Aspas, it was the story of a persistent underdogs beating the much-vaunted superstars. So far, that’s what this World Cup has been so far.

Does this mean the end of the tiki-taka style football?

πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡Έ πŸ†š πŸ‡·πŸ‡Ί from www.fifa.com
⚽ Ignashevich (11' minutes og) ⚽ Dzyuba (41' minutes pen) Russia win 4-3 on penalties

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