Saturday 16 December 2017

Arshavin brushes off criticism of form and rumours of Advocaat rift

ANDREI Arshavin has brushed off criticism of his performance for Russia in their Euro 2012 qualifier and also denied reports of a bust-up with manager Dick Advocaat.

Russia are top of Group B in the European Championship qualifiers after back to back wins against Ireland and Slovakia in the past week, but Arsenal man Arshavin was heavily criticised by sections of the media back home for his displays, especially when he appeared to refuse to shake hands with boss Advocaat when he was substituted during Tuesday's 1-0 win in Macedonia.

"Every single time I go out onto the pitch I do so with the aim of playing well, I know I can't always do that but I always try," he said.

"And if someone wants to criticise the team, I am happy to take that criticism onto myself if it means that the other lads in the team can play better.

"And it's not true to suggest that I refused to shake the manager's hand after he substituted me. When I came off the pitch I went straight to the dressing room, Dick was standing far away at the time, and that's all there is to it. In terms of the group we have had a good start and a good week with the wins over Ireland and Macedonia."

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