A Russian should replace Dick Advocaat as head coach of the Russian national football team, CSKA Moscow and Russia defender Vasily Berezutsky told RIA Novosti on Monday.
Advocaat said Monday he would step down after Euro 2012 following two years in charge, in comments reported by Russian daily Sport-Express on Monday.
“Regarding our future, I’m sure that a Russian coach should work with the Russian national team,” Berezutsky said.
The last Russian coach to lead the country was Yuri Syomin, who stepped down in 2006 after the country failed to qualify for that year’s World Cup.
Berezutsky was surprised to hear of the Dutchman’s departure, he said.
“The news that Advocaat will leave the national team after the Euros is obviously very unexpected.”
Berezutsky refused to speculate why Advocaat had chosen to leave before hearing from the coach and Russian Football Union head Sergei Fursenko.
“It’s pointless to talk about the reasons why at the moment because that’s the prerogative of only Advocaat and Sergei Fursenko.”
The news also came as a shock to Lokomotiv Moscow and Russia forward Roman Pavlyuchenko.
“Advocaat’s going after the Euros? I don’t know anything about that yet,” he told RIA Novosti on Monday.
Euro 2012 runs from June 8 through July 1. Russia will face the Czech Republic, Poland and Greece in the group stage.