“We have poor psychology. We don’t know how to play under pressure. We panic. Instead, the Europeans are enjoying it,” admitted striker Artyom Dzyuba, who scored his team’s only goal against Denmark (4-1).
Russia reached the last day with options to qualify for the round of 16. He deserved it with a draw, but a big defeat left him out of the tournament in which he played two matches in St. Petersburg.
Russian sports stars, such as tennis player Marat Safin, have used social media to make accusations against Russian footballers, who are always criticized for the difference between their high salaries and poor performance.
Failed, but still Cherchesov
They have all admitted failure. Players, journalists, politicians and the federation themselves described the result as “unsatisfactory”. Everyone, except coach Stanislav Cherchesov, gave little self-criticism.
“The difference with the World Cup is that we now have less experienced players,” he said. This argument had already been repeated months before Eurocopa.
Cherchesov, who has an evil character, has always been a favorite target of the press. Criticism was silenced during the World Cup, but it was exacerbated in recent months by the team’s poor performance.
However, few today openly claim Cherchesov’s head. Which is that the best coaches in the country are either busy or don’t want to take over the national team. One of these candidates will be the current director of Rostov, Valery Karpin.
The experience of hiring a foreign coach did not go well. Italian Fabio Capello and Dutchman Dick Advocaat collected a lot and also lost in the first stage in the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2012 respectively.
According to the press, Cherchesov does not intend to resign. Today, Tuesday, the players bid farewell until September, when the World Cup qualifiers stage will resume.
There are no world class players
The press admitted that no players go further than the first round, despite the fact that the default opponent of Russia in the round of 16 was Wales who blinded many.
Golovin, the stunning Siberian at the World Cup, plays for Monaco, who are third in the Ligue 1. Despite injuries and his contract with covid-19, he is a key player in the emirate team, but he was disappointed in the European Cup. Hardly any risks.
Eternal Promise is Alexey Miranchuk, the great Atalanta midfielder. The problem is that it does not suit Cherchesov’s taste. It was a substitute against the Belgians. When he started against the Finns, he sealed the match with a superb goal.
The rest of the team, with the exception of Mario Fernandez, is mediocre. Which does not mean that the list of 26 players invited by the coach will not satisfy anyone.
Dinamo goalkeeper Shonin is naturally insecure, but he insisted that the Brazilian nationalist Guilherme (Lokomotiv), who replaced Akinfeev after the World Cup, made a lot of mistakes in the national jersey.
After getting three goals in the first match, he changed it to the young Safonov who got four goals in Copenhagen yesterday. He did the same with the middle of Semenov, who was identified as the main culprit in the defeat against the “Red Devils”. His replacement, young Davieve, could do nothing before Danish pressure.
The two midfielders, Ozdov and Zubnin, were criticized for not contributing anything to the attack. In addition, the last goal gave Poulsen the second goal with a dreadful task for the goalkeeper. But Cherchesov kept them all three matches.
Dziuba also looked tired, but he was the captain. Untouchable. Sublev inflicted the penalty as soon as he jumped onto the field. Ex-Real Madrid, Denis Sheryshev, barely had minutes.
Russia is not the Soviet Union
Interestingly, today Tuesday marks 33 years since the Soviet Union qualified for the 1988 European Cup final after eliminating mighty Italy with two goals from Litovchenko and Protasov.
The USSR would end up losing in the final to the Netherlands, but this team included world-class players like Dasayev, Bilanov or Mikhailichenko. Let’s not say that his coach was Ukrainian Valery Lobanovsky, who is considered one of the most creative coaches in the history of football.
The truth is that the Soviet Union was the European champion in 1960 and reached the finals in 1964. It competed with dignity in the World Cup finals. The same cannot be said of his heir, the Russian Federation.
Russia has been eliminated in the first stage of all Nations Championships, with the exception of the 2008 European Championship – it fell in the semi-finals to Spain (0-3) – and the last World Cup, when it reached the quarter-finals, where it was knocked down by Croatia.
Spain’s elimination on penalties has made some believe that Russian football has returned to its old laurels, but the reality is quite stubborn.
Russian clubs, which won the UEFA Championship in 2005 (CSKA) and 2008 (Zenit), have not stopped losing face in recent years. Petrorublos no longer attracts anyone and a few stars decide to join the Russian League.
Russian football needs perestroika and that should start with salary cuts and investment in popular football. High salaries have turned Russian footballers into broken, unambitious games, unable to compete in the international arena.