Russia played an A match at home for the first time since the invasion of Ukraine in February last year.
Russia, ranked 37th in the FIFA rankings, won 2-0 against Iraq, ranked 68th, at the Gazprom Arena in Saint Petersburg, Russia on the morning of the 27th (Korean time). It has been 16 months since Russia played an A match at home in November 2021, after the European qualifiers for the 2022 Qatar World Cup with Cyprus, also held in St. Petersburg. Russia was banned from the World Cup qualifiers in Qatar due to FIFA sanctions after the invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, and rarely played against other countries.
Russia also failed to participate in the European Football Federation (UEFA) Nations League, and played away matches against Kyrgyzstan in September last year, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan in November, and Iran on the 23rd. Russia then returned home after a year and four months and overpowered Iraq, winning six months after a 2-1 victory over Kyrgyzstan last September. Russia drew 0-0 with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan and 1-1 with Iran.
Russia secured the victory with consecutive goals from Anton Miranshuk in the 5th minute and Sergei Piniaev in the 13th minute of the second half. Born in 2004, Piniaev became the youngest scorer for the Russian national team when he scored at the age of 18 years and 4 months.