Russia captain Andrei Arshavin has expressed his delight at his side’s 4-1 Group A win over the Czech Republic on Friday.
Alan Dzagoev and Roman Shirokov scored early in the first half to give Dick Advocaat’s men a 2-0 lead at half-time in their Euro 2012
Vaclav Pilar reduced the deficit, though Dzagoev and substitute Roman Pavlyuchenko netted late on as Russia recorded a big victory in Wroclaw.
Arshavin, who provided two assists, gave his detailed account on the game, and remained optimistic of his side’s chances.
“On the one hand, everybody was happy with the result today, we were really excited. On the other hand, we know that in three days we are having a very difficult match against the team that hosts the championship (Poland).” the 29-year-old wrote on his website.
“I think the fans of both teams did a good job. But I believe our fans had more reasons to be happy. In general, there was plenty of support from both sides.
“We did not expect our opponents to start the game like that. The Czechs rushed forward, creating danger at our goal, they managed to learn and use some set pieces and corners.
“They took possession of the ball, of the territory, started putting pressure in our zone.
“As soon as it started to turn out right, we immediately began creating dangerous moments in front of (Petr) Cech.
“The counterattacks our Russian national team produced then were memorable and precise. And two of them were effective, 2-0, a good score for the first half.
“I would not say that we experienced some sort of fear. I’d rather describe my feelings at that moment as apprehension. Of course, having scored a goal, the Czechs showed that they managed to crack open our defence.
“It’s obvious that had we conceded one more goal, it is unknown how the game would have ended so we had to try and take the game away from our goal.
“We had to take control and not to expect our rival not to score. And our counterattack, in which Alan (Dzagoev) scored an important goal, was just in time. After that goal, I think the Czechs didn’t even think about winning that game.”
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