Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 22nd 2015 Contents A50
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, August 22, 2015
MOSCOW---New Russia coach
Leonid Slutsky is putting his trust
in veteran players as he tries to
save his team s hopes of reaching
next year s European champi-
Slutsky took over as coach of
the 2018 World Cup host on
August 7 on a short-term deal after
poor results under his predecessor
Fabio Capello left Russia in danger
of failing to reach Euro 2016.
His first Russia squad focuses
on veterans, with no players
younger than 24 and seven over
the age of 30, a profound change
after Capello had tried to bring in
youngsters ahead of the 2018 World
The only two debutants are
midfielder Alexander Erokhin, 25,
and fullback Oleg Kuzmin, who is
34.Slutsky also remains in charge
of club side CSKA Moscow, which
has five players in his first Russia
squad. Attack options are provided
by Dynamo Moscow s Alexander
Kokorin and Zenit St Petersburg s
Artyom Dzyuba, while FC
Krasnodar striker Fyodor Smolov
returns for the first time since 2013.
All but one of the 24-man squad
play their club football in Russia,
with Real Madrid winger Denis
Cheryshev the exception.
Russia hosts Sweden on Sep-
tember 5 in a crunch qualifier
before visiting Liechtenstein three
days later. Russia sits third in qual-
ifying Group E, outside the auto-
matic qualifying places.
Russia has won just two of its
last ten competitive matches in a
run of poor form dating back
almost two years. During that time,
the only wins in official games
came against Liechtenstein and
Montenegro, the latter victory
awarded by default when the
match was abandoned due to
New Russia coach looks to
veterans to save Euro 2016 bid
MEXICO CITY---Ricardo Fer-
retti of Brazil will take over
as interim coach of Mexico s
national football team.
Mexican soccer federation
president Decio De Maria told
Fox Sports Mexico that Fer-
retti agreed to manage the
team for four matches before
resuming his duties with
Mexican club team Tigres.
Former coach Miguel Her-
rera was fired last month fol-
lowing a television reporter s
claim that the coach punched
him at a US airport.
De Maria said Ferretti had
still to sign a contract and "we
will give the details next
Mexico, which won the
2015 Gold Cup under Herrera,
will play the United States on
October 10 in a playoff for a
berth at the 2017 Confeder-
Ferretti will make his debut
on September 4 against T&T.
Four days later, Mexico will
play Argentina in its last
preparation match before fac-
ing the US. (AP)
to be Mexico's
interim football coach
HAGATNA---Visas for members of the Guam
national soccer team to enter Iran have been delayed
two weeks ahead of a qualifying match, leaving a
Guam official to say political tensions between the
US and the Islamic republic shouldn t affect sports.
Matao, the national football team for the US territory
of Guam, is scheduled to play Iran on September 3
in a Group D World Cup qualifying match, but the
team has struggled to get the necessary visas.
Guam Football Association President Richard K
Lai said the Iran Football Association has been giving
them "the run-around," and if the situation doesn t
get straightened out soon, the lack of visas could
keep Guam players out of Iran.
Guam began the process of obtaining visas to Iran
in June and was told only recently by the association
that it would take 21 days to first obtain an autho-
risation code to get their passports stamped with
visas, Lai said.
They were told that would initially take seven days,
and Matao planned a training camp in Qatar the
week before match with Iran, he said.
"We asked them to forward all the reference num-
bers to the Iranian Embassy in Qatar. They said that
was not possible because the training camp is only
five days and then it takes seven days to get the visa,"
The team then sent the passports to the Guam s
congressional delegate in Washington, DC, to process
the passports through the Pakistani Embassy, which
handles Iranian interests in the US since the two
countries don t have formal ties.
But Guam officials this week decided to change
the location of the training camp to Japan, and sud-
denly asked that the passports be returned so they
can gain entry for the camp in Osaka.
Lai is hopeful the Iran Football Association, its
travel sponsor to the Islamic republic, steps in and
Iran grants visas to the players upon arrival.
"They gave a visa upon arrival for our national
team in 2003 when we lost to them 19-0," he said.
"Why can t they give us visa upon arrival today?"
The Asian Football Confederation said in an emailed
statement that its understanding is that the Iran
Football Federation was preparing the visas to be
sent to a third country by Friday.
Lai was uncertain what the ramifications would
be if the game is not played September 3.
"That is something Fifa and AFC need to decide;
Igor Akinfeev, Alexei
Berezutsky, Vasily Berezutsky,
Denis Cheryshev, Igor Denisov,
Alan Dzagoev, Artyom Dzyuba,
Alexander Erokhin, Yuri
Gazinsky, Denis Glushakov,
Vladimir Granat, Sergei
Ignashevich, Alexei Ionov,
Dmitry Kombarov, Alexander
Kokorin, Oleg Kuzmin, Yuri
Lodygin, Pavel Mamaev, Artyom
Rebrov, Oleg Shatov, Roman
Shirokov, Igor Smolnikov,
Fyodor Smolov, Yuri Zhirkov.
how to remedy the situation. Maybe we schedule
the match to play somewhere else. I don t know," he
Fifa, the organising body for the World Cup, did
not respond to a request for comment. (AP)
Visa flap may sink World Cup
qualifying match for Guam
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