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  Wednesday, December 11, 2019
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Russia are to begin their 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign
Russia are to begin their 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign with a home fixture against Wales on September 10, 2008, followed by an away match against Germany a month later, on October 11.

Russia were drawn in Group 5 for the 2010 World Cup qualifying rounds. The final stage of the tournament is to be held in South Africa, the first time the competition has been awarded to an African country.

Apart from Wales and Germany, Russia's other opponents in Group 5 are Finland, Azerbaijan and Liechtenstein. Russia are due to round off their qualifying campaign with an away match against the former Soviet republic of Azerbaijan on October 14, 2009.

The first placed team in each group will automatically go through to the 2010 World Cup, while the best eight second-placed teams will play off against each other. There are nine groups in total in the European zone.

Other qualifying groups saw England again placed with Croatia, the side that dumped them out of Euro 2008, while South and North Korea are set to face each other in a potentially explosive derby in the competition's Asian qualifying zone.

Before they turn their attention to the 2010 World Cup, however, Russia will be hoping to get out of their group for the first time in a major tournament when they take part in Euro 2008, to be held in Austria and Switzerland this June. The young Russian side, managed by Dutch trainer Guus Hiddink, will meet Spain, Greece and Sweden in their group.


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