Russian Federation vs Egypt | 19 Jun 2018

FIFA World Cup 2018 Russia vs Egypt

As for the hosts, they got the tournament off to an unexpectedly joyous start in the first game when they walloped Saudi Arabia.

Jose Gimenez's 89th-minute victor for Uruguay against Egypt was watched from the sidelines by Mohamed Salah, who remained in cold storage on the bench despite pre-match claims from veteran boss Hector Cuper that the Liverpool superstar was "almost 100 per cent" fit following his shoulder injury.

"He is fit. I hope he will be fit to play".

Egypt count right-back Ahmed Fathi as a minor doubt with muscular tightness, while team manager Ihab Leheta is keen to present a united front.

Ignashevich's experience is an asset but his age counts against him and any attempt to double up on Salah will free up Mahmoud Hassan, better known by his nickname "Trezeguet", on the opposite flank.

While Russia already have three points to their name in Group A, Egypt will be looking to get their first points on the board. A win guarantees Russian Federation a spot in the quarterfinals, while a draw all but assures a berth based on its sizable goal differential.

It wasn't quite such a good start for Egypt, who were without talisman Mohamed Salah as they fell to a late defeat at the hands of Uruguay.

FIFA World Cup 2018 Russia vs Egypt
Russian Federation vs Egypt | 19 Jun 2018

Salah also returned to training on Saturday as AFP posted photos of him taking part in the training camp in Grozny, despite needing help from his teammates to lift his shirt above his shoulder.

The Pharaohs are still desperately seeking a first World Cup win in what will be their sixth game at the finals.

The match takes place at Saint Petersburg Stadium at 20:00 CEST. Will their starboy Mohammad Salah be able to inspire them to a win, we shall see in sometime.

"Of course, he has a big influence on Egypt but the team is still 11 players, not one". Let us know in the comments section below.

"Our culture as Egyptians means that all our hearts beat as one, and that is what we feel", he said.

"We realise that this is going to be a very tough game against a host nation supported by thousands of fans".

"In the match against Russian Federation we will go for it because we want to stay here for as long as we can".

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