On Wednesday October 14, the Russian football maintained the perfect record for the qualification for the 2014 World Cup. Prior to this last game, Russia recorded wins over Northern Ireland, Israel, and Portugal. This last victory was an important one over Azerbaijan. Not only has the football team made it through the first part of qualification undefeated, but they have managed to also not yet let up a goal. Russia has scored a total of 8 points over the course of these four games without letting in any-a huge accomplishment.
Another reason which makes this winning streak so impressive is that this is a new era in Russian football. After the failed Euro 2012 campaign, a new coach, Capello, was hired. Along with Capello being brought on board, so were many new players. As noted from a sports article in Russia discussing the team, “The Italian coach [Capello] has commanded respect from Russian fans for getting results after a bold decision to dispense with a generation of players who many considered to be automatic choices”. A slew of starters were in fact cut from the team and replaced with a fresh new generation of players such as Dmitry Kombarov and Andrei Yeshchenko-which is proving to be beneficial to the team.
With such an amazing start to the season and bright outlook on the future will the Russian team be able to keep it up? Or are they simply running on beginner’s luck whose winning streak could end at any time. We will find out at their next big match against the United States on November 14.