Roman Shirokov felt Russia's ability to capitalise on chances was crucial as they defeated the Czech Republic, while the influential Roman Pavlyuchenko warned against getting carried away.
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Russia made a blistering start to Group A as they defeated the Czech Republic 4-1 in Wroclaw with Alan Dzagoev scoring twice. Three of their key men, including Russia's other goalscorers, Roman Shirokov and Roman Pavlyuchenko, said they were delighted to post maximum points as they shared their thoughts on the game afterwards.
Roman Shirokov, Russia midfielder
The key factor was that we took our chances. We scored two of our first three [chances] and it helped us a lot. We didn't start well, but by 25 minutes in, we were 2-0 up. [After the Czech Republic goal] it was quite tough. At half-time we said that we had to play well early in the second half, but [seven] minutes in we conceded a goal.
We played pretty well and had chances, but then we found ourselves in a bit of trouble. It's good that we scored soon after that. We were eager to win and we wanted to win convincingly, but we didn't imagine that everything would go so well for us.
Yuri Zhirkov, Russia defender
It's always important to win the first match. It was important to take the three points. We've played pretty well in these two games [including the 3-0 friendly win against Italy] both defensively and in attack – maybe this was the key factor in us scoring these seven goals.
Roman Pavlyuchenko, Russia forward
We cannot let ourselves get too carried away; we have only three days before our next game. We should forget about this match tomorrow and start preparations for Poland. The task is not completed yet and we cannot afford to take it easy. We expect harder games to come.