Farid Benstiti has stepped down as the coach of both the Russian national women's team and champions FC Rossiyanka because of family circumstances.
Former Olympique Lyonnais coach Benstiti took charge of Russia last September and in January added the Rossiyanka role. His club contract expired in June after he had successfully defended their Russian title, but Benstiti has opted not to renew for their 2012/13 UEFA Women's Champions League bid, which begins in the round of 32, and also has left his national-team role, with Vladimir Antonov in caretaker charge for Wednesday’s friendly against France.
"It was very hard for him to be far away from his large family," a Rossiyanka club statement read. "His children are being educated in France and couldn't move to Russia. He will soon become the head coach of Paris Saint-Germain FC."
Although Russia an no longer catch Italy to win UEFA Women’s EURO 2013 qualifying Group 1, they retain hopes of reaching next July’s finals in Sweden. Wins in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia on 15 September and at home to Italy four days later would give them second place and at least a play-off berth, or even the automatic qualifying slot as best runners-up across the seven groups should other results go their way.
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