EURO 2020: Russia fires manager Stanislav Cherchesov after early exit

In the run-up to the tournament, Russian sports officials had said they wanted to reach the knockout stage, building on their success at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Stanislav Cherchesov

Russia has sacked manager Stanislav Cherchesov after it finished bottom of its group at the European Championship.   -  REUTERS

Russia has sacked manager Stanislav Cherchesov after it finished bottom of its group at the European Championship, the country's governing Football Union (RFS) said on Thursday.

In the run-up to the tournament, Russian sports officials had said they wanted to reach the knockout stage, building on their success at the 2018 World Cup in Russia where they dazzled fans by reaching the quarter-finals for the first time.

But Russia's tepid performance at Euro 2020, where it suffered two big defeats and had a narrow win despite playing mostly at home, sparked criticism from fans and pundits alike.

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It also prompted sports officials to say they would evaluate the team's performance and make appropriate changes to coaching staff if needed.

Alexander Dyukov, president of the RFS, said in statement that it had decided to terminate Cherchesov's contract. He had been in the job since August 2016.

"The Russian Football Union will start looking for candidates for the post of head coach to prepare the team for qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup," Dyukov said.

The RFS did not say who might be in the running.

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After Russia's 4-1 loss to Denmark in its final group stage match, Cherchesov said his players lacked big tournament experience and had committed too many defensive blunders.

A former goalkeeper for the national team, the experienced 57-year-old was hailed as a national hero during the 2018 World Cup for leading Russia to its best all-time performance.

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