Alexander Kerzhakov scores late winner for Fabio Capello's
By David Kent
Russia started their World Cup countdown with a 1-0 win over Slovakia
in St Petersburg on Monday.
Former England boss Fabio Capello picked a strong team for the clash minus
injured captain Roman Shirokov, but it took them until the 82nd minute
for them to take the lead through substitute Alexander Kerzhakov.
The Zenit St Petersburg striker Kerzhakov, who replaced Alexander Kokorov
in the 75th minute, headed in the game's only goal after a cross from
debutant Maxim Kannunikov.
Alexander Kokorin had earlier thought he'd put Russia in front after latching
onto a Sergei Ignashevich through ball before lifting the ball over keeper
But Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg ruled the Dynamo Moscow player
Kerzhakov's goal was his 25th for Russia - two more will make him the
nation's all-time top scorer.
Capello's side now have friendlies against Norway on May 31 and Morocco
on June 5 before heading for Brazil to contest their first World Cup finals
in 12 years.
They'll take on South Korea, Belgium and Algeria in group