Former FC Spartak Moskva coach Georgi Yartsev is to take charge of the Russia national team for the rest of their UEFA EURO 2004™ qualifying campaign, the Football Union of Russia (RFS) has announced.
The 55-year-old succeeds Valeri Gazzaev, who resigned last week following a 2-1 home friendly defeat by Israel. Yartsev led Spartak to the 1996 Russian league title, after assuming the reins when Oleg Romantsev left to concentrate on coaching the national team.
However, Romantsev returned the following year and Yartsev stepped down to work as his assistant. He was coach subsequently at FC Dinamo Moskva and SC Rotor Volgograd but has been out of football since June 2000.
'A mutual decision'
RFS executive director Aleksandar Tukmanov said: "We have decided on Yartsev. It was a mutual decision, made by our executive body." A former Soviet Union international and striker with both Spartak and PFC CSKA Moskva, he was top scorer in the old Soviet league in 1979.
Russia currently lie third in EURO 2004™ Group 10, five points behind leaders Switzerland but with a game in hand. Yartsev's first match in charge will be against the Republic of Ireland in Dublin on 6 September, before Russia welcome Switzerland to Moscow four days later and then meet Georgia in the Russian capital on 11 October.
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