Cheryshev dedicates two goals to family

Russia star Denis Cheryshev has had a testing few years but he enjoyed his day in the sun in the 5-0 hammering of Saudi Arabia.

Russia international Denis Cheryshev scored a stunning brace on Thursday.   -  Getty Images

Russia hero Denis Cheryshev dedicated his two goals in the 5-0 thrashing of Saudi Arabia in the World Cup's opening game to his family for sticking by him through some tough times.

Cheryshev's career in LaLiga has been blighted by injury, first at Real Madrid and then in subsequent spells at Sevilla, Valencia and Villarreal.

READ: Russia crushes Saudi Arabia 5-0; Cheryshev, Golovin star in World Cup opener

But he was delighted to have helped his nation get off to a dream start as the Saudis were overrun in Moscow, Cheryshev's double added to by goals from Yuri Gazinskiy, Artem Dzyuba and Aleksandr Golovin.

After receiving his Man of the Match award, he said: "There are no words to express what I'm feeling. I'm happy that we won, that I could help my team.

"I'm happy for the team and for my family as they've suffered so much due to my injuries, they deserve this result.

"We shouldn't stop here, at any moment when you relax you can be kicked out."

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Cheryshev started the game on the bench but made a 24th-minute introduction when Alan Dzagoev went down with a hamstring injury that could end his tournament.

"I always respect the decision of the coach, there is no right to be angry or upset," he added. "I was extremely happy that I was among the 23 and I would like to continue at such a level."

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