WARSAW: Russia coach Dick Advocaat on Monday played down suggestions that his side are favorites to make the last eight at Euro 2012, ahead of their crunch fixture against Poland and after they thrashed the Czech Republic 4-1.
“It was just one game,” the Dutch veteran said of the demolition of the Czechs, ahead of a final training session in Warsaw’s National Stadium, where Poland and Russia meet on Tuesday for one of the most politically-charged clashes of the tournament.
With Poland only managing a 1-1 draw with Greece in their own opening game in Warsaw on Friday — despite the vocal support of tens of thousands of home fans, or perhaps due to that pressure — Tuesday’s match is crucial for the Euro 2012 co-hosts if they want to keep their hopes alive.
“Poland are a very strong team and they’re playing at home, which is an advantage. But we showed in the first game that we’re a very good team and we can make it very difficult for our opponents,” said Advocaat.
“Poland and Russia are going to go for a win, and only during a game can you say if that’s realistic or not.”Pundits see Russia as shoo-ins to top Group C favorites after the result against the Czechs in the southwestern Polish city of Wroclaw on Friday.