Mohamed Salah’s return to the lineup dominated the prematch talk, but it was Russia’s dominance that became the story on Tuesday afternoon.
A trio of second half goals proved more than enough for the hosts, who took down Salah’s Egypt, 3-1, on Tuesday. The win all but puts Russia into the knockout round with six points and a plus-seven goal differential from their first two matches. Egypt, meanwhile, is all but eliminated with the loss barring a miracle.
Russia jumped into the lead just a minute into the second half on a bizarre goal. Following a clearance, a hopeful ball in was fired in the direction of Egypt defender Ahmed Fathi. The fullback was bumped by Artem Dyzuba as he looked to clear the ball, firing the ball into his own net as he fell to give Russia the lead.
The hosts doubled that lead in the 59th minute on a goal from Denis Cheryshev, whose finish was his third of the tournament. The Russian winger finished on an assist from Mario Fernandes, who fired a pass just outside of the six-yard box to allow Cheryshev to finish first-time.
Three minutes later, it was 3-0 as Dyzuba scored his second of the tournament to all but eliminate Egypt.
While the first half was fairly uneventful, there were some dangerous moments for both sides with most of that danger coming from out wide. The best look was likely a shot from Salah, who turned and curled an effort just wide of the post from just outside the box.
Salah was able to get on the board eventually, though, burying a spot kick that proved little more than consolation.
Russia concludes the group stage against favorites Uruguay in their final match of the round while Egypt will look to pick up the team’s first points against Saudi Arabia.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Cheryshev continues his rise as the Russian winger was the standout once again.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Russia’s third goal all but ended any hopes of Egypt’s comeback as Dyzuba locked up the hosts’ win.
MATCH TO FORGET
Fathi was quite unfortunate on the own goal, but it was a moment that put his side’s back against the wall in a must-win match.