Russia coach Dick Advocaat faces
inevitable comparisons with his predecessor Guus Hiddink
regardless of his team's showing at Euro 2012.
Advocaat succeeded his Dutch compatriot, who steered Russia
to the Euro 2008 semi-finals in their best showing for 20 years,
following their failure to qualify for the 2010 World Cup.
Unlike his charming predecessor, who was adored by Russian
fans and media alike, Advocaat has faced severe criticism
throughout the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign.
Advocaat, dubbed the 'Little General' because of his small
stature and authoritative manner, has repeatedly clashed with
the media and football experts over his selection policy.
Critics have also blamed him for failing to blood new
players and reverting to overly defensive tactics.
Former Russia forward Dmitry Bulykin accused Advocaat of
"turning the national team into his own private club" after
being overlooked despite notching 21 goals for ADO Den Haag to
become the Dutch league's second highest scorer in 2010/11.
Even Advocaat's own players have had a go at him. Striker
Roman Pavlyuchenko complained the coach had his favourites after
being relegated to the bench early last year.
However, the 64-year-old coach, who will step down as Russia
boss following the Euros to take charge of PSV Eindhoven, has
repeatedly stated that he cares little about his image.
His only concern is results and he has certainly had his
fair share of good and bad ones in a long coaching career.
He took the Netherlands to the quarter-finals of the 1994
World Cup and semi-finals of Euro 2004 and later managed in
South Korea, the United Arab Emirates and Belgium.
Asked about the legacy he wanted to leave soon after taking
the Zenit St Petersburg job on his first spell in Russia in
2006, Advocaat said: "I want to win trophies. That would be the
In his first coaching spell in Russia, he led Zenit to their
first league title in nearly a quarter of a century in 2007 and
the following year guided them to a UEFA Cup trimph.
During his second spell in the country, Advocaat has again
shown he is a master of his trade, as Russia comfortably sealed
their place in the finals by topping their qualifying group.
However, his coaching career in Russia will come to an end
after the tournament being co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine.
True to his image, Advocaat has brushed aside any
speculation about changing his mind and keeping his job if the
Russians exceeded their Euro expectations.
"No way. I'm not going back on my decision no matter what,"
he told reporters before departing for the Euros on Sunday.
Borussia Dortmund's Mario Gotze ruled out of Champions League final against Bayern Munich
Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini will leave the La Liga club at the end of the current season
Stoke City and manager Tony Pulis part company by mutual agreement after seven years
Andy Carroll pulls out of England's friendly internationals against Ireland and Brazil
Ten years on, the legends speak to FFT
Your questions answered by an A to Z of legends
He's here, he's there, he's...
The cost of Premier League away travel
Nike CR7 IX for you
FourFourTwo is brought to you by Haymarket Consumer Media & FourFourTwo is part of Haymarket Sport
| International Licensing | © Haymarket Media Group 2010