Russia routs Saudi Arabia 5-0 in opening game of World Cup

Russia's Denis Cheryshev celebrates after scoring his side's fourth goal during the group A match between Russia and Saudi Arabia which opens the 2018

Russia's Denis Cheryshev dribbles past Saudi Arabia players to score his side's second goal during the 2018 soccer World Cup opening match at the Luzh

Russia's Yuri Gazinsky celebrates with teammates after scoring his side's first goal during the group A match between Russia and Saudi Arabia which op

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers his speech prior to the match between Russia and Saudi Arabia which opens the 2018 soccer World Cup as FIFA

Russia's Denis Cheryshev celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the group A match between Russia and Saudi Arabia which opens the 2018

MOSCOW (AP) — Substitute Denis Cheryshev scored two goals to lead host Russia over Saudi Arabia 5-0 Thursday in the opening match of the World Cup.

With President Vladimir Putin watching, Cheryshev chipped the ball over two Saudi defenders in the 43rd minute and shot over goalkeeper Abdullah Al Muaiouf's right side. He later chipped the ball in for Russia's fourth goal in stoppage time.

Yuri Gazinsky initially put Russia ahead with a header from Alexander Golovin's cross in the 12th minute.

After Cheryshev's first goal, Artyom Dzyuba made an instant impact off the bench to make it 3-0 in the 71st with a header from Golovin's cross. Golovin added the fifth from a free kick.

It was Russia's first World Cup win since 2002 and ended a seven-game winless run overall.

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