Iniesta retires from Spain after World Cup loss to Russian Federation

Iniesta retires from Spain after World Cup loss to Russian Federation

Iniesta retires from Spain after World Cup loss to Russian Federation

Argentina and Portugal's eliminations from the World Cup on Saturday has led to much talk over the worldwide futures of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Although we admit it's a bit early to be talking about England in a World Cup final, it must be said that they will likely never have a better chance than they do now to reach that stage.

This is the first time Russian Federation have made it into the last eight at a World Cup since the break-up of the Soviet Union.

Spain lost to Russian Federation 3-4 in a penalty shootout after being held to a 1-1 draw after extra time in their round of 16 match in Moscow.

"We were hoping for penalties and that's what happened".

Eight years ago Iniesta scored the goal that gave Spain their first ever World Cup in South Africa.

Spanish midfielder Andres Iniesta, who won the World Cup with Spain in 2010, announced his retirement after the match.

Ramos had a role in Spain's opening goal as Sergei Ignashevich converted into his own net trying to mark the Spaniard.

In addition to scoring the World Cup's winning goal in 2010, Iniesta had also been key for Spain when it won the 2008 and 2012 European Championships with its tiki-taka style modeled on Barcelona's ball-possession game.

In the end he needed only four after Akinfeev's heroics completed one of the all-time great World Cup backs-to-the-wall performances and sent Russian Federation into the quarter-finals.

Goalkeeper Danijel Subasic saved three penalties to seal the match against Denmark, which ended in a 1-1 draw before the 3-2 shootout victory.

Spain joined Argentina, Portugal and Germany among the big guns to have been eliminated from this World Cup, but Iniesta said he believed the future for the Spain team was bright.

This was their first penalty shootout in World Cups, while for Spain this was their fourth. The Vatreni were back on level terms soon afer through Mario Mandzukic, but neither side was unable to land a decisive blow before the end of the 90 minutes.

"Penalties are a lottery - and we lost today, but I am very proud of these players as captain".

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