When you looked at the groups before the World Cup there were some dead certs as to who was going to qualify.
France would top their group, Argentina theirs, Portugal theirs… I think you're getting the picture. Russia had top spot wrapped up - didn't they?
They arrived with a good record and some big-name players, but left with only one win to their name and one of the challengers for miss of the tournament.
That win came in the first match against Tunisia - when Dmitry Sychev was particularly impressive - and everything looked rosy for Russia, until Japan came into view.
I don't know if they got wrapped up in the occasion, but the wheels started to come off in that defeat and the whole bandwagon came to a juddering halt against Belgium.
They were cruising along initially, everything going to plan at 1-1, but after scoring the equaliser, Vladimir Beschastnykh conspired to find the side-netting when the goal was at his mercy and with that effort went another Lineker prediction.