Russia feared at Euro 2012: PavlyuchenkoJune 8th, 2012 - 3:52 pm ICT by IANS
Lviv (Ukraine), June 8 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russia have matured since their Euro 2008 semi-final appearance, becoming a team to be feared at this year’s tournament, former Tottenham Hotspur striker Roman Pavlyuchenko has said.
“We were the dark horses in 2008 and very few people believed in us,” the 30-year-old striker, now at Lokomotiv Moscow, said on the website of his new team.
“Now we have serious experience, we have a robust team that people have begun to fear.”
Compared to the team that beat the Netherlands 3-1 in extra time in the 2008 quarterfinal, Russia have become “wider and more solid,” said Pavlyuchenko, who scored the opener in that game and was named in the 23-man squad of the tournament.
Russia kick off their Group A campaign late Friday against the Czech Republic in Wroclaw, before going on to play co-hosts Poland Tuesday and Greece June 16 in Warsaw.
Pavlyuchenko joined Lokomotiv from Tottenham in the winter transfer window after three and a half seasons in London.
He has scored twice in nine games for Lokomotiv, who finished a disappointing seventh in the Russian Premier League, leading to the dismissal of coach Jose Couceiro.
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- I expected more from the Poles: Russia's Izmailov - Jun 11, 2012
- Euro 2012: Russia's Kokorin out with injury - Jun 15, 2012
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Tags: appearance, czech republic, dark horses, dg, euro 2008, euro 2012, extra time, hosts, jose couceiro, lokomotiv moscow, lviv ukraine, man squad, premier league, quarterfinal, ria novosti russia, robust team, striker, tottenham hotspur, warsaw, wroclaw