Tue June 19, 2018
Advertisement
Can't connect right now! retry

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

Sports

AFP
June 14, 2018

Share

Advertisement

Russian coach ignoring critics ahead of Cup opener

MOSCOW: Russia coach Stanislav Cherchesov has told his team to ignore media criticism ahead of Thursday’s World Cup kick-off against Saudi Arabia and focus on winning.

x
Advertisement

The host nation enter their first home World Cup in the worst possible form.They have beaten both Russian and Soviet records by going winless in seven matches and slumping to 70th in the world, the lowest of the 32 teams in the tournament.

Newspaper headlines are asking not whether Russia stand a chance of lifting their first World Cup trophy but if things can possibly get any worse. “We have to take all the criticism and turn it into something positive,” Cherchesov told reporters after the team’s final practise at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium. The imposing 80,000-seat arena has been rebuilt from the days it hosted the 1980 Summer Olympics and will be the venue of both Thursday’s tournament kickoff and the July 15 final. President Vladimir Putin has already said he expects to see much better from Russia when he arrives in Luzhniki for the opening ceremony.

“We very much expect — all fans and lovers of football in Russia — expect the team to play with dignity, for them to show modern, interesting football, and to fight until the end,” Putin said last week.

Russia’s last two World Cup warm-ups saw them manage just one shot on target in a 1-0 loss to Austria and 1-1 draw with Turkey. The team have not tasted victory in eight months but Cherchesov promised that everything will look different should Russia manage to beat Saudi Arabia.

“The first game will be the most important one because it will leave its stamp on the entire campaign,” the 54-year-old former national team goalkeeper said. “Every player knows that he represents his country and will give everything he has for the win.”

Advertisement

Comments

Advertisement
Advertisement

Topstory

Opinion

Newspost

Editorial

National

World

Sports

Business

Karachi

Lahore

Islamabad

Peshawar