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Advocaat starting from scratch

Published: Monday 11 June 2012, 22.00CET
Richard van Poortvliet found Russia coach Dick Advocaat in cautious mood during Monday's press conference as he seeks to avoid complacency ahead of their game against Poland.
by Richard van Poortvliet
from Warsaw
 
 
Published: Monday 11 June 2012, 22.00CET

Advocaat starting from scratch

Richard van Poortvliet found Russia coach Dick Advocaat in cautious mood during Monday's press conference as he seeks to avoid complacency ahead of their game against Poland.

Despite Russia's impressive 4-1 victory in their opening UEFA EURO 2012 encounter with the Czech Republic, Dick Advocaat is taking nothing for granted as his side prepare to take on the co-hosts Poland. The Dutchman has no injury worries and has a full squad to choose from and is unlikely to make any changes to his starting XI. He was also quick to emphasise that his players understand that they need to put that result behind them and there is no hint of complacency within the squad.

©AFP/Getty Images

Dick Advocaat shows off his skills in training on Monday

"You can't say that Russia will win the tournament after just one game, we need to look forward," said the 64-year-old. "Of course it was important that we managed to win our first game. Now we need to forget about the game with the Czech Republic and try and get a result [against Poland] and I think my players understand this."

Russia know if they do manage to beat Poland, they will be assured of a spot in the last eight. However, the situation for their opponents is a lot more serious following a 1-1 draw with Greece in their opening match. Adovcaat's counterpart Franciszek Smuda said he would be satisfied with a draw, though the Dutchman believes both sides will be playing to win. He also believes Poland have the potential to cause his side problems and the support of a capacity crowd will certainly help them.

"For the first 25 minutes against Greece, Poland were very organised and played attacking football, and they could have scored three goals," he said. "However, this never happened and they lost their confidence." Advocaat, though, also pointed out that he doesn't think that the Poles will look to sit back and defend, saying: "We saw that Poland don't only play counterattacking football, but they are also able to play their own game."

Both Advocaat and Konstantin Zyryanov were frequently asked about the merits of individual players, such as Andrey Arshavin and Alan Dzagoev, who both starred against the Czech Republic. However, on numerous occasions both spelled out the importance of Russia being a team, rather than a collection of individuals. It seems that morale is high in the camp and it will get even better if they manage to make it two wins out of two on Tuesday.

Last updated: 24/06/12 7.48CET

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