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World Cup qualifying wrap: Russia edge Portugal

Russia have held on for a 1-0 win in their 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier at home to Portugal, settled by Aleksandr Kerzhakov’s early goal.

Kerzhakov put the home side in front after just six minutes but Fabio Capello’s men had to weather a barrage of Portuguese goal-scoring opportunities to continue their 100 percent start to Group F in UEFA qualifying.

Portugal gave the ball way in their own half in the lead-up to the only goal of the match in Moscow, which was created by Roman Shirokov.

As Pepe inexplicably charged forward toward the Russian midfielder, Shirokov passed to Kerzhakov, who burst in behind the defender, having been played onside by Bruno Alves, and fired a powerful shot past visiting goalkeeper Patricio.

Portugal had seven shots on target for the match, including a number of great opportunities from set-pieces, but could not find the net as Russia held on to win and move three points clear of the visitors at the top of the group.

More to follow…

Fri 12 October, 2012
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