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Crunch Time for Russian National Team

11. November 2009 by James 0 Comments

This Saturday the hopes of an entire nation and beautiful Russian women, will be placed on the feet of just a few men as Russia takes on Slovenia in the first match of a two game playoff to see who will advance to next year’s World Cup.


The first game will be played this Saturday evening at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

 

Players are Ready

The Russians come into the series with no injuries and are the odds on favorites to win but they have cautious confidence going into this important series.


 “We all understand just what a very important match this is for us and the second leg as well of course, as next week we will know whether we will be going to the World Cup, or watching it on TV,” Igor Semshov said. “We are all feeling upbeat, but we are fully focused on the task ahead.”

 

Experience

A big advantage for the Russia side is that head coach Guus Hiddink had kept the same team for the qualifying matches. Despite a slow start in the Russian Premier League, Lokomotiv Moscow forward Dmitry Sychev has scored 11 goals in the last 15 games for the club. Which resulted in a call up for the national  team. But Rubin stars Aleksander Ryszantsev and Roman Sharonov, who both played well in the recent Champions League games with Barcelona, will not be a part of the playoff games.

 

Confident Coach

Hiddink knows that for every footballer it is an honor and a privilege to play on the national team. The Dutchman is happy that there is competition for starting spots on the national team. One thing that he looks for are players that still support the team even if they are not playing. Those are the players, the ones with pride and heart, he wants on his team.


The Russian team will need those players to do their best for this Saturday’s home match and next week’s in Slovenia.