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Friday, 14 June, 2002, 10:58 GMT 11:58 UK
Romantsev quits
Oleg Romantsev on the training ground
Romantsev's team won only one match

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Oleg Romantsev has resigned as Russia's head coach following his team's dismal showing at the World Cup.

Romantsev sent a letter of resignation to the Russian Football Union following his side's elimination after a 3-2 defeat to Belgium.

Team press officer Alexander Lvov confirmed that Romantsev's two assistants - Mikhail Gershkovich and Sergey Pavlov - had also tendered their resignations.

The result saw Russia, group favourites to progress to the knockout phase, eliminated from the World Cup having finished third in Group H.

A draw would have sent them into the last 16.

Russian news agencies Interfax and Itar-Tass said the team of coaches told Russia's football federation chief Vyacheslav Koloskov that they assumed "full responsibility for the poor showing of the team".

"It was not an immediate or emotional decision," Lvov said.

"The coaches discussed their move for almost 40 minutes before they decided to resign."

Romantsev's decision was not a surprise as he earlier promised to quit if his side failed to progress to the second round.

"If the team does not qualify for the second stage then the coach has to quit," Romantsev told reporters even before the tournament started three weeks ago.

Romantsev said then it was normal practice for the national coach to step down if the team did not survive the group stage.


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GROUP H
  P GD PTS
JAPAN 3 +3 7
BELGIUM 3 +1 5
RUSSIA 3 0 3
TUNISIA 3 -4 1

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