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Football: Debut Draw for Fabio Capello
August 17, 2012 10:48

Fabio Capello’s debut match ended in a draw, revealing Russia’s weak and strong points to the new boss who was often shown grimacing on the bench.

The Ivory Coast denied Russia a home victory, quickly recovering after the free-kick goal netted by one of top Euro 2008 scorers Alan Dzagoev on 55 minutes.

Max Gradel’s initial header rebounded from the crossbar and neither the hosts’ keeper Vyacheslav Malafeyev nor the surprised defenders were able to stop him from equalizing 13 minutes from the time.

Russia’s first international friendly since Euro 2012 was not quite friendly, with veteran right back Aleksandr Anyukov carried away from the pitch on stretchers after colliding with two opponents in mid-air. He was soon back on his feet, but was immediately grounded with doctors suspecting a concussion.

Fresh faces

Unlike former manager Dick Advocaat who relied heavily on the Euro 2008 bronze winners, the Italian coach did not hesitate to bring in new names to the lineup. Viktor Fayzulin (Zenit St. Petersburg), Georgy Shchennikov (CSKA Moscow) and Arseny Logashov (Anzhi Makhachkala) sought to put their best foot forward in the game against the Ivory Coast.

The new boss showed his independence by keeping captain Andrey Arshavin on the sidelines in the first half and clearing his list of some of 30+ players like Konstantin Zyryanov.

"It was not a performance, it was a rehearsal," Capello said. "I had a chance to look at new young players in this game. Some of them have never played for the national team. I'm very pleased with the performance. I'm sure I had a strong team."

Despite the satisfaction he expressed at the press conference, Capello will face a tough choice ahead of Russia’s first 2014 World Cup qualifier against Northern Ireland on September 7.

If you want to come over to Moscow to watch any of the upcoming games live, feel free to contact Russia-IC to help you with tickets and accommodation. In the meantime, watch the highlights of the game here:

 Teams:

Russia: Igor Akinfeyev (Vyacheslav Malafeyev, 59), Aleksandr Anyukov (Arseny Logashov, 30), Vasily Berezutsky, Georgy Shchennikov, Sergey Ignashevich, Igor Denisov, Denis Glushakov, Alan Dzagoev (Andrey Arshavin, 59), Viktor Fayzulin, Vladimir Bystrov (Aleksandr Samedov, 74), Roman Pavlyuchenko (Aleksandr Kokorin, 46).

Ivory Coast: Daniel Yeboah, Emmanuel Eboue (Jean -Jacques Gosso, 84), Didier Zokora, Siaka Tiene, Abdul Razak (Didier Ya Konan, 69), Yaya Toure (Yanick Sagbo, 90), Kolo Toure, Max Gradel, Kader Keita, Didier Drogba, Sol Bamba.




Author: Mikhail Vesely

Tags: Russian team Fabio Capello football 2014 World Cup Ivory Coast 

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