Advocaat backs Russia to compete
© AFP

Russia coach Dick Advocaat has said he wants his players to believe they can win the UEFA EURO 2012 title next year.

"My main goal is to win the event. And it should become the main goal for all of the Russian national team's players. We'll see how realistic is this mission for us," the Dutchman told Russian daily Soviet Sport.

The former Rangers and Zenit St. Petersburg coach added that EURO 2008, when Russia reached the semi-finals, proved what his team are capable of achieving.

My main goal is to win the event. And it should become the main goal for all of the Russian national team's players.
Dick Advocaat, Russia coach

Advocaat also revealed that he has already settled in his mind the players who will form the backbone of his squad for EURO 2012, which is being jointly hosted by Poland and Ukraine.

"After the qualifying campaign for the European Championship I believe that if my players can keep their concentration we can beat anyone on our day.

"But frankly speaking, in general Russia still fail to reach the level of Europe's leading national teams."