Egypt's World Cup opponent Russia suffer more misery in loss to Austria

Reuters , Wednesday 30 May 2018,
Austria's players celebrate after scoring during the friendly soccer match between Austria and Russia in the Tivoli Stadium in Innsbruck, Austria, on Wednesday(Photo: AP)

World Cup hosts Russia turned in another unconvincing display as Austria extended their winless run stretching back to October with a 1-0 victory in a friendly on Wednesday.

The home side, who have not qualified for the finals, exposed defensive frailties in Stanislav Cherchesov's team with Alessandro Schopf sending a neat finish past Igor Akinfeev following a fine run from Marko Arnautovic after 28 minutes.

Shorn of competitive football due to qualifying as hosts, Russia have spent the last two years playing friendlies against some of the world's leading sides, but their preparations have been far from ideal.

Cherchesov’s spluttering team faced a barrage of criticism in the Russian media after suffering heavy home defeats by Brazil and France in March and the coach’s negative tactics were also questioned.

Russia have conceded 10 goals in their last four games and failed to win in six matches.

Sergei Ignashevich, who will turn 39 in July, came out of retirement to join the Russia squad ahead of the major global sporting showpiece, replacing the injured Ruslan Kambolov.

But the return of the veteran, who earned his 121st cap against Austria, did little to reduce Russia's defensive woes and the defeat represented another big blow for Cherchesov's team who clearly lack quality in every department.

On paper, however, Russia are still favourites to reach the World Cup knockout stages from a group including Uruguay, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Russia host Turkey in their last warm-up in Moscow on June 5.

Short link:



  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.