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Studious Capello casts wary eye over Sweden

Published: Sunday 23 February 2014, 17.14CET
Russia coach Fabio Capello is taking nothing for granted despite his side's heavyweight billing in Group G, with Sweden's Erik Hamrén savouring a "fantastic challenge."

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Published: Sunday 23 February 2014, 17.14CET

Studious Capello casts wary eye over Sweden

Russia coach Fabio Capello is taking nothing for granted despite his side's heavyweight billing in Group G, with Sweden's Erik Hamrén savouring a "fantastic challenge."

Fabio Capello, Russia coach
The group is a tough one. We have Sweden who I know well and Montenegro who I know even better having come up against them with England. I don't know much about Austria, but they're all teams who came close to reaching the World Cup. I have respect for all our opponents and there will be lots of difficult matches. Sweden are a team that nobody wanted in their group. Now we have to play against a team with a player I know very well – Zlatan Ibrahimović.

Erik Hamrén, Sweden coach
Russia will be seen as group favourites partly because they are the only team to have qualified for the World Cup. They also won their World Cup qualifying group ahead of Portugal and that's impressive. Austria are another very good team and will only get better. They're a young side with lots of potential. We've played Moldova in previous EURO qualifiers and know them well. We don't know the other teams in great detail but Montenegro began World Cup qualifying strongly. It's going to be a fantastic challenge.

Marcel Koller, Austria coach 
We come up against two very strong opponents in Russia and Sweden. Russia will be favourites but we all know what Sweden and Zlatan Ibrahimović are capable of. I believe we can qualify from this group so long as we play to our potential and give 100% in each game. That wasn't enough for us in the recent World Cup qualifiers, so we need to up our game. We need to work hard, be passionate on the pitch and hope luck goes our way. 

Branko Brnovic, Montenegro coach
It's a very challenging group, but this team can be a match for anyone. We will be in contention to win the group although Russia are slight favourites. Sweden will be particularly motivated after missing out on the World Cup, while Austria have a lot of talented players. It will be hard to qualify but it's possible.

Stanislav Namaşco, Moldova goalkeeper 
Russia and Sweden are the firm favourites, while Montenegro and Austria are also strong. It will be important to make a good start. I hope we can challenge for third spot. The most important thing is to remain confident and do our best to compete. In the last World Cup qualifiers we played well against nearly all our opponents except England.

Liechtenstein coach René Pauritsch
Above all, I'm pleased to have the chance to take on my home country of Austria, a match that – like the game against Sweden with superstar Zlatan Ibrahimović – will be easy to sell. I was a little less happy to draw Russia from pot one, though. They are technically very strong, with a well-known coach in Fabio Capello. The matches against Montenegro and Moldova will be hugely dependent on the conditions on the matchdays. In the past, Liechtenstein have been good for surprises time and again, so [we hope] this will continue in the coming qualifying campaign.

Last updated: 05/06/15 1.52CET

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