German opponent: Russia is a football country

German opponent: Russia is a football country

eIn June of this year, as the World Cup in Russia was in full swing, a video was posted on Youtube. On it can be seen a cheerful young man, with a beer can in his hand in the center of Moscow on two policemen goes to them and cheers them and asks them if he will probably drink at the end of the World Cup in the street. "Are you Russian?" The police ask, and when he says yes, they say, "Not then."

During the World Cup, Russia, along with football fans from all over the world, had fallen into a kind of intoxication that overruled the otherwise valid rules: on the escalators of the Moscow metro, which are rarely talked about, South Americans roared into their cell phone cameras Lawns at the foot of the Kremlin, which are strictly forbidden to enter, picnicked groups of men with beer and chips. All this disappeared with the tourists, in Moscow peace and discipline have arrived.

But the intoxication had another component. The Russians, whose enthusiasm for football kept within tight limits until the World Cup, were suddenly inflamed fiercely for their "Sbornaja", which surprisingly reached the quarter-finals. After the victory over Spain in the round of the last sixteen, exuberant fans spontaneously celebrated on Red Square, something that almost never happens in Russia, let alone in this place: state-controlled celebrations take place there, such as the military parade on May 9 or the Christmas market , Russia's star striker Artjom Dzjuba, one of the main reasons for the new football enthusiasm, called after the departure of the team on the fan mile: "We have proven that we are just a football country!"

Ascent to the A-League within reach

Was Dzjuba right? Are the fans now pouring into the staggered stadiums to watch their home teams play? The state television cheered in mid-October, when the "Sbornaja" played in the Nations League in Sochi against Turkey, the fans would not have their team "let down" and filled the stadium as in World Cup times: with a good 38,000 spectators. Russia lead their group, which is next to Turkey still Sweden, after three of four games. The promotion to the A-League is within reach before the last group match in Sweden on Tuesday. The game in Leipzig against Germany (20.45 clock / F.A.Z. international match live scores and RTL) should serve as a preparation for this important duel.

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