The Russian national football team drew with the Croatian team in the fourth round of the World Cup qualifying tournament. In the first match of the team under the new head coach Valeria Karpin, the score was 0: 0.
The meeting, which took place at Luzhniki, was expected from the moment the Russians flew out of the European Championship 2.5 months ago. Since then, the national team has changed dramatically. Stanislav Cherchesov as head coach was replaced by Valery Karpin, who left Rostov. He, in turn, introduced his own rules to the national team. Karpin did not call Artem Dziuba and returned Lokomotiv goalkeeper Marinato Guilherme.
games of the national teams of Russia and Croatia in the match of the fourth round of the qualifying tournament of the World Cup
In the first half, there was only one moment at the gates of the Croatian national team: debutant Arsen Zakharyan beat them dangerously, but goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic caught his ball. At the end of the first 45 minutes, the guests tried to hit Guilherme’s goal several times. The most dangerous of all was the blow of Ivan Perisic, who struck past from a lethal position.
In the second half, the speed of the players of both teams slowed down a bit. Karpin, who looked annoyed, made several changes, but they did not bring any tangible effect. The main mentor of the Croats, Zlatko Dalic, also made several changes, but they did not affect the game either. As a result, the score remained in a draw – 0: 0. Karpin clarified that his players tried to play daring football and called the result of the match good. His colleague, Zlatko Dalic, also summed up the match. He admitted that Karpin surprised him by releasing midfielder Alexei Miranchuk in the position of a false nine.
In the parallel games of Group H, the Malta national team beat Cyprus 3-0 at their home stadium, while Slovenia drew with Slovakia (1: 1). The first two places in the standings are occupied by the Croats and the Russians (seven points each), the Slovaks close the top three (six points), followed by Slovenia, Malta and Cyprus (four points each).
In September, Russia will meet with the teams of Cyprus (September 4) and Malta (September 7) in the qualifying tournament for the 2022 World Cup.
This was the first match of the Russians with a new coach. The fact that Karpin will become the main mentor of the national team was announced on 23 July.
The audience greeted Karpin positively. The game at the Luzhniki stadium was attended by 18708 people (with the permitted 20 thousand), all of them greeted the name of the coach announced by the announcer with a standing ovation. On the stands flashed a banner with the image of Karpin and the inscription “Let’s go.”
In addition, 18-year-old Dynamo midfielder Arsen Zakharyan made his debut at this match in the starting lineup of the Russian national team. As writes “Championship.com“, Karpin assessed the game of 18-year-old Zakharyan as” worthy “.
In addition to him, the 23-year-old Rubin defender Ilya Samoshnikov made his debut in the Russian team. The captain’s armband on this game belonged to Georgy Dzhikiy. Zenit defender Dmitry Chistyakov left the team before the match.