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Russia appoints coach Karpin for World Cup qualifying group

July 24, 2021 GMT

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s soccer federation has appointed Valery Karpin on a temporary contract to coach the national team through its World Cup qualifying group.

The former Russia midfielder replaces Stanislav Cherchesov who was fired after the team placed last in its group at the European Championship last month.

Karpin will continue to coach Russian club Rostov while preparing to resume World Cup qualifying against Croatia on Sept. 1 in Moscow.

Both teams are on six points after three games and only the winner of Group H will advance directly to the 2022 tournament in Qatar.

“We will make every effort to solve this problem,” said Karpin, who was in Russia’s squad at the 1994 and 2002 World Cups.

The runner-up in the six-nation group will enter playoffs next March.

The Russian soccer body said Karpin’s contract through December could be extended.

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