Russian Federation obey Putin's orders with opening-day win


The Confederations Cup's final is due in St. Petersburg on July 2.

The 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup begins this weekend, as tournament hosts Russian Federation take on New Zealand.

World Cup holders Germany and the six winners of Federation Internationale de Football Association confederations descend on Russia for the two-week tournament that will allow the hosts to assess the readiness of four of its World Cup venues and its ability to handle fans from overseas.

Fans need to formalize and get a fan-ID to get to 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup matches.

Hosts Russia have beaten New Zealand 2-0 in St. Petersburg to get their Federation Internationale de Football Association 2017 Confederations Cup campaign off to a winning start.

World No 95 New Zealand had been very hopeful of springing an upset against the 63rd-ranked Russian side at St Petersburg's Krestovsky Stadium on Saturday (Sunday NZ time).

It helped the Russian team to seize the lead after twice having shots stopped on the line.

Russia, playing New Zealand in Group A to kick off the cup, scored in the 31st minute through Denis Glushakov.

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New Zealand are now without a win in 10 Confederations Cup matches and struggled to make an attacking impression.

Russia's win certainly eased the pressure on winning its second game, against Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal in Moscow on Wednesday.

When the goal came, it had an ugly finish after two pretty pieces of individual skill once the All-Whites defense needlessly lost the ball.

The Russian ace slotted the ball over the keeper Stefan Marinovic but Micael Boxall attempting to clear off the line got the last touch - and the goal was credited to the New Zealander.

Key figures such as Alan Dzagoev, Artem Dzyuba and Roman Zobnin are absent from the Confederations Cup through injury while veterans Vasili Berezutski and Sergei Ignashevich have retired.

Following the welcome speech of Putin, Infantino began his speech in speaking at first in Russian.

Shprygin, who was twice deported from France a year ago during Euro 2016, said he had been notified by organisers that his fan-ID, needed to attend matches, had been cancelled.

With an average age of just 24 years and four months, and a combined total of 179 global appearances, Germany have the most youthful squad of the eight Confederation Cup teams.