Los Angeles Times

Russia's loss is a nyet gain

MOSCOW - It was the lowest-ranked team in the World Cup it was hosting, one given virtually no shot to get out of group play.

Yet Russia did just that, advancing to the final 16 of for the first time since it became an independent country.

It had no shot to win there, though, not against Spain, the 10th-best team in the world and the tournament champion in 2010.

Yet Russia did just that, with coach Stanislav Cherchesov devising a brilliant defensive game plan

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