Football: Russians off to peer at Wigan shops

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The Independent Online
Russia's players, criticised by their coach for a distinct lack of fighting spirit when they lost 3-0 to Germany on Sunday, reacted by going shopping yesterday.

The Russians can still qualify for the final stages of Euro 96 if they beat the Czech Republic on Wednesday. However, they cancelled training to indulge in some credit card therapy after two successive defeats. "They have the day off and are planning a shopping spree in Wigan." said Lev Zarokhovich, a team spokesman, yesterday.

After Sunday's defeat, Oleg Romantsev, the team coach, had said: "The best players were those who sat on the bench, because the ones on the field all looked as weak as each other."