The second day of FIFA World Cup 2018, going on in Russia, was slated for three encounters. And all of the three matches were a tough fight. Here we try to look at all the three matches and analyze the role of fitness in the game.
Egypt Vs Uruguay
Playing their first match of the world cup without Md Salah, Egypt fell short to catch up with Uruguay. A game that saw neck to neck fight was ultimately won by latter. In the 89th minute, a header by Jose Gimenez gave ‘La Celeste’ their first win. The goal came very late as the Egyptians managed very well in keeping up the Uruguayan attack at bay. Egypt face hosts, Russia, in their next encounter. Meanwhile, Uruguay would like to get to the top, in their match with Saudi Arabia.
Morocco Vs Iran
Next match of the day was from Group B that proved to be another late blitz. Favorites to win the game, Moroccan player Aziz Bouhaddouz handed his team a loss by an own goal. In the 95th minute, with only one minute of play remaining, Aziz netted the ball into his own goal. This is the first world cup win for Iran in 20 years. On the other hand, with this heartbreaking loss, Morocco ended their 18 match winning streak. The final score read 0-1.
Portugal Vs Spain
Surely the highlight of the day was contest between Ronaldo’s Portugal and Ramos’ Spain. Into the game for just 4 minutes, the fans were handed over a cheering occasion when Ronaldo netted the ball. With fightback from Spain, in form of strikes by Diego Costa, Spain looked in full control. Tightening the grip, Nacho hit another one in the 58’. But it was all about the hat-trick of Ronaldo that was to make headlines. In the 88’, an exquisite of penalty shot brought the scores to level on 3-3. And this ensured that Portugal shared points with Spain.
Role of fitness
Being a game of 90 minutes football surely puts a player under pressure. The games played yesterday were no less then display of mental and physical strength by the team. In the second match, star player of Iran, Jahanbakhsh was taken out on stretcher while several other instances of injuries were visible. It is possible in the game to switch players as playing for long sometimes they get out of their zone. An ideal of fitness is surely visible in Ronaldo, who hit the hat-trick and was there for his team whole 90 minutes. If looked upon closely, it was the tired legs of Egyptians that handed them a loss. Bit of loosening up can get you heavily punished as is visible from the day’s break up.