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Thursday, 5 September, 2002, 11:01 GMT 12:01 UK
Russians dismiss match worries
Mick McCarthy's team are favourites to win their Euro 2004 group
McCarthy's side take on Russia on Saturday afternoon
Russia v Republic of Ireland | European Championship Group 10 qualifier | Moscow | Saturday, 7 September kick-off 1600 BST | Live on BBC Sport Online

Russia's soccer chief has dismissed reports that the 2004 European Championship qualifier against Ireland on Saturday could be postponed because of heavy smog in Moscow.

"No, absolutely not, we don't even have any provisions for a possible postponement," said Alexander Tukmanov, executive director of the Russian Football Union on Thursday.

"The match will go on schedule, I can guarantee that".

Russian media had quoted federation secretary general Vladimir Rodionov earlier in the day as saying that the Group 10 opener at Moscow's Lokomotiv stadium could be in jeopardy.

The smog from fires outside the capital thickened considerably on Thursday morning, particularly in eastern Moscow, where the Lokomotiv stadium is located.


I wouldn't worry about the cancellation of the match
Russian official Alexander Tukmanov

The pitch was barely visible from the upper stands.

Smog also prompted delays in some flights at Moscow airports on Thursday morning.

The Irish were scheduled to arrive in Moscow later on Thursday.

"We're monitoring the situation on a daily basis," said Tukmanov.

"Yes, the smog was really bad this morning, but in the afternoon the situation has improved.

"So right now I wouldn't worry about the cancellation of the match on Saturday".


WC = World Cup
WCQ = World Cup
EC = European Championship
ECQ = European Championship
F = Friendly International


HEAD TO HEAD MATCH TOTALS

All Russia Ireld Drawn
Total meetings 11 5 4 2
World Cup Quals 4 2 2 0
Euro Ch'ships 1 0 0 1
Euro Ch Quals 2 1 1 0
Friendlies 4 2 1 1


FIXTURE HISTORY

DATE COMP MATCH RESULT
18 Oct 1972 WC Q Rep of I 1-2 Soviet Un
13 May 1973 WC Q Soviet Un 1-0 Rep of I
30 Oct 1972 EC Q Rep of I 3-0 Soviet Un
18 May 1975 EC Q Soviet Un 2-1 Rep of I
12 Sep 1984 WC Q Rep of I 1-0 Soviet Un
16 Oct 1985 WC Q Soviet Un 2-0 Rep of I
15 Jun 1988 EC Soviet Un 1-1 Rep of I
25 Apr 1990 F Rep of I 1-0 Soviet Un
23 Mar 1994 F Rep of I 0-0 Russia
27 Mar 1996 F Rep of I 0-2 Russia
13 Feb 2002 F Rep of I 2-0 Russia


MOST RECENT MEETING

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND 2-0 RUSSIA
Friendly - 13 February, 2002 - Lansdowne Road, Dublin
Rep Ireland scorers: Reid 3, Robbie Keane 20
Rep Ireland team: Given (Kiely 46), Finnan (McAteer 72) (Quinn 90), Harte (Staunton 72), Roy Keane (Holland 86), O'Brien (Dunne 46), Cunningham (Breen 46), Reid (Kelly G 46), Healy (Carsley 46), Robbie Keane (Sadlier 72), Duff (Morrison 46), Kilbane (Kennedy 46).
Russia team: Nigmatullin, Khlestov (Daev 90), Kovtun, Khokhlov (Izmailov 53), Nikiforov (Chugainov 66), Onopko, Karpin,. Mostovoi, Alenichev (Semak 72), Bestchastnykh, Titov.
Referee: Dermot Gallagher - Att: 44,000


All the build-up to Euro 2004

How the groups line up

Background features
See also:

05 Sep 02 | Man Utd
04 Sep 02 | Republic of Ireland
29 Aug 02 | Football
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