Russia secure a crucial 1-0 win over Finland to get off the mark at Euro 2020.
Football fans took a backseat in Finland's 1-0 win against Denmark on Saturday, with the concern over Christian Eriksen's health taking priority. While the result was of secondary importance, it did represent success for Markku Kanerva's men, who had Joel Pohjanpalo's goal and Lukas Hradecky's penalty save to thank for their victory. A win against the Danes also ended a six-game winless run and put them in good standing in Group B.
Hello and welcome to live coverage of the Euro 2020 Group B clash between Finland and Russia.
Russia were no match for the world's number-one ranked team as they fell to a 3-0 loss against Belgium. The three-goal deficit means they are bottom of Group B and also stretched their winless
European Championship run to six games. Reassuringly for Stanislav Cherchesov's men, however, they have never lost four in a row in this competition and they have also claimed four wins from four encounters with today's opponents.
In the 47th minute Russia got their opener. A short passing sequence sees Miranchuk and Dzyuba exchange a one-two, with the former making it to the right of goal. Miranchuk has three defenders around him but he uses them to his advantage as he cuts in and curls a left-footed shot into the top left corner past Hradecky.
Pohjanpalo thought he had given Kanerva's men the lead inside the opening 10 minutes, however, his headed effort was ruled out for offside by VAR. Miranchuk, who displayed the only bit of magic in this game, then curled into the top left corner to open the scoring on the stroke of half-time. The Russian's left-footed finish proved the difference in this game, with Finland rarely testing Safonov in the second half at Saint Petersburg Stadium.
Both teams now sit on three points in Group B having played two games each. Finland next face the thankless task of facing Belgium on Monday, while Russia face Denmark on the same day as Cherchesov's men look to build upon their win here.