Russia Keep Euro Dream Alive

After kicking off their Euro 2008 campaign with a humbling 4-1 defeat to Spain, even the most patriotic of Russians must have felt that their national team would be heading home with their tail between their legs by now...

But despite their dramatic initial loss, the Russians, led by Dutch coach Guus Hiddink, have managed to pull off a remarkable turn around in fortunes, improving their game and snatching a well-deserved 1-0 victory over defending champions Greece.

After some nice build up play, a long cross came over from the left of the Russian midfield which both Antonis Nikopolidis, the Greek keeper, and Sergei Semak, the Russian captain, chased. It was Semak who got there first though and with a cheeky flick hit the ball over his own shoulder and back towards the goal where Konstantin Zyryanov was at hand to guide the ball home - the keeper still stranded.

The result means that they have chance to qualify from their group, however they will have to defeat Sweden who have the same number of points as them, but a greater goal difference. Spain have already qualified with six points.


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