40 days to go: Hosts make their mark

The 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ is getting closer – 40 days to go! Between now and the start of the World Cup, we will take a closer look at a different statistic from the history of the tournament each day.

40 matches at the FIFA World Cup have involved the Soviet Union or its successor Russia. The best finish achieved by either side was fourth place at England 1966, when legendary goalkeeper Lev Yashin inspired the team to the semi-finals through a series of brilliant and brave performances at the age of 36.

In the post-Soviet era, Russia wrote history at the tournament when striker Oleg Salenko became the only footballer to score five goals in one game against Cameroon at USA 1994. 

The Sbornaya’s last win at the World Cup dates back to 2002, when they overcame Tunisia 2-0 in their opening match in Korea/Japan. Since then, Russia have chalked up two draws and three losses, so the fans will be hoping the team can reverse this unfortunate trend on home soil.