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Mystery Manager Haunts NT

3:48 PMGoalChatter

Russia Football Union To Unveil List of Candidates

Tired of the growing rumor mill (this is football, not Hollywood!), the RFU will clear things up this coming Tuesday, ending speculation on the mystery manager by releasing an official list of candidates. Among the rumored available persons are ex-Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola and former England head coach Fabio Capello. The press has been insistent that one of these men will soon become the head coach of Russia's National Football Team. There have been mentions of less well-known candidates, including secondary NT manager Yuri Krasnozhan and several coaches in the RPL, but recent articles on the supposed signing of either Guardiola or Capello must have hit a nerve. The Russian Football Union issued an official statement clarifying the situation. The first point made by the RFU denies that any contract has been signed thus far for the National Team's managerial post. The second statement is the Union's attempt to take back the reins from the mass media by promising to publish the official list of candidates with whom the RFU will commence discussing a possible signing. Such information is not usually made public, though the head of the Department of Information Policy stated the list will “demonstrate the management's active involvement in the search for a new head coach”. A casting call or a cover-up? Russian news source makes a good point by reminding us of England's managerial signing. The FA left the list-making to the press, making Roy Hodgson's appointment completely unexpected. Like Hodgson, the new manager's number one priority will be preparing the team for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Russia was drawn in Group F for UEFA's World Cup qualification matches, alongside Euro 2012 bronze medalists Portugal. The team's first match will be on October 16th against Azerbaijan.

The last string of success of the Russia NT was with the Flying Dutchman and current Anzhi manager, Guus Hiddink. In 2008, Hiddink led the Russians to 3rd place in the European Championship.

Whoever this new manager is, here's hoping he stays awhile and reshapes the team. He'll need a lot of patience and a whole lot of Borscht.

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