Advocaat: Russia best team at Euro 2012

Russia's momentum may have slowed after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Euro 2012 co-hosts Poland but that has not made coach Dick Advocaat any more modest.


He still named Russia as the best team at the tournament and disputed the notion that "over-confidence" may have affected their performance in the wake of a 4-1 thrashing of the Czech Republic in their Group A opener.

Russia took the lead against the Poles when Alan Dzagoyev sent a looping header into the net from captain Andrei Arshavin's inswinging free-kick after 37 minutes.

But Poland fought back with a spectacular strike by captain Jakub Blaszczykowski and kept the Russians at bay for the rest of the match, cheered on by most of the 55,920 crowd.

Asked which team was the best at the finals now all 16 have played Advocaat did not hesitate.

"It has been Russia in terms of football, the way we play."

But he conceded: "At 1-0 I did think we would get more space, but that didn't happen. We lost the ball too fast then they had the counter attack. The field was too open, we left too many spaces."

He denied his team may have suffered from over-confidence.

"Our first game was 4-1, and then this second game was like an away game, and there was this beautiful equaliser," he said.

"Both teams worked very hard, Russia had more possession, and playing away it was very hard."

The Dutchman also dismissed criticism that he should have replaced his exhausted captain Arshavin.

"Arshavin was the sharpest with the ball, so I was not going to change him. Every time he got the ball something happened so I left him on the field," he said.

Russia top the group with four points ahead of the Czech Republic on three and Poland with two while Greece are bottom with just one point. Russia play Greece in Warsaw on Saturday.

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