Unsafe hands? De Gea saves just one shot at World Cup

Howard TerryJul 04, 2018

We've achieved great success, things that we all dreamed of when we were small, but also we've had great disappointments and we've lived very hard moments.

"We were hoping for penalties", Akinfeev said after the match ended 1-1 after extra time, following a Sergei Ignashevich own goal and an assured Artem Dzyuba penalty.

"It's reality that today has been my last match for the national team", he told reporters.

Switzerland, who have never done better than the spot in the last eight they achieved as hosts in 1954, take on Sweden on Tuesday in Saint Petersburg with the winners going on to face England or Colombia.

The paper "Superdeporte" looks elsewhere to cast the blame, looking back to Real Madrid's announcement they had signed Julen Lopetegui as their new coach just two days before the tournament started, leading to Lopetegui's sacking and his last-minute replacement by Fernando Hierro.

"I am not in favor of many changes", he said.

Spain dominated the ball against Russian Federation, making a World Cup record 1,137 passes over 120 minutes, in an exhibition of possession football that was reminiscent of how they strangled teams during their victorious 2010 World Cup campaign.

Andres Iniesta confirmed his global retirement immediately after the game and Gerard Pique is set to join him.

"I'm not an opportunist", said Hierro, who was part of Lopetegui's coaching staff, adding, "the situation was what it was, there is no sense in looking back".

"The main culprits in football are the players that are the ones on the field".

Spain won the World Cup in 2010 but were knocked out at the first hurdle in Brazil four years later. "The manager always thinks the best for the team and he's got to make the decisions even though one agrees with them or not". He also made a bad mistake in the opener against Portugal, letting a weak shot from Cristiano Ronaldo go underneath him for a goal.

The team's reserve goalkeepers at the World Cup were veteran Pepe Reina and youngster Kepa Arrizabalaga.

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