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  • Writer's pictureThe Season Ticket

Euro 2020 | Miranchuk strike earns Russia first win

A brilliant goal from Aleksey Miranchuk has earned Russia a 1-0 win over Finland in Group B of Euro 2020.

Miranchuk played a one-two with Russia captain Artem Dzyuba on the edge of the box before curling a sublime finish into the far top corner in first half stoppage time.

Russia had survived an early scare after Finland attacker Joel Pohjanpalo netted an excellent header inside three minutes, only for the goal to be ruled out for offside following a VAR consultation.

The result leaves both Russia and Finland on three points after two games, with Finland beating 1-0 Denmark last week.

Belgium, who beat Russia 3-0 in their opening Group B match, will face Denmark on Thursday.

Russia carved out a number of good opportunities after being spared by VAR.

Magomed Ozdoevon should have found the net, but skied his effort at the back post after a good pass from Miranchuk.

Igor Diveev then made a superb diving block to deny lively Finland forward Pohjanpalo in the 20th minute.

In the 37th minute, Finland defender Jere Uronen then made a wonderful interception to prevent Vyacheslav Karavaev from tapping in a cross at the back post.

Miranchuk's delightful curling strike on his left foot then gave Stanislav Cherchesov's men the lead at the interval.

Norwich City striker Teemu Pukki had two chances early in the second half; his first was deflected over the bar by Diveev, his second was fired straight at Russia goalkeeper Matvey Safonov.

At the other end, Aleksandr Golovin's powerful low drive from 25 yards flashed just past the post.

Rifat Zhemaletdinov dragged a shot wide after being played through by Miranchuk as Russia looked to put the game to bed.

Finland goalkeeper Lucas Hradecky then made a stunning one-handed save to tip Daler Kuzyaev's curling shot around the post in the 71st minute.

Russia closed the game out in a scrappy final quarter to earn their first win in this year's tournament, one which keeps their hopes of making the knockout stages alive.

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