Soccer-Russia names Valeriy Karpin manager of men's team after early Euro exit

MOSCOW (Reuters) -Russia on Friday appointed Valeriy Karpin as manager of the men's national team, the country's football union said, as they seek to qualify for next year's World Cup finals after a lukewarm performance at the European Championship.

Russia sacked manager Stanislav Cherchesov earlier this month after his side finished bottom of their group at Euro 2020.

Russia suffered two big defeats and had a narrow win despite playing mostly at home, sparking wide-ranging criticism from fans and pundits alike.

Cherchesov, who had been in the post since August 2016, led Russia to the quarter-finals on home soil at the 2018 World Cup, their best all-time performance at the tournament.

Karpin is due to sign a contract with the national team on July 26, Russia's football union said in a statement. It will last until Dec. 31, 2021 but can be extended.

The former midfielder, who spent much of his playing career in Spain and made more than 70 appearances for Russia, guided Rostov FC to ninth in the Russian Premier League last season.

"Valery Karpin needs no introduction," Alexander Dyukov, president of the Russian Football Union (RFS), said.

"After his career as a player (he) gained a wealth of coaching experience, including in recent years successfully working for the club Rostov," Dyukov said, in comments shared by the RFS.

(Reporting by Polina Ivanova and Alexander Marrow; Writing by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber and Polina Ivanova;Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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