Andrei Arshavin: Why Russia Can Survive Euro 2012 Without Him

Roberto Alvarez-GallosoChief Writer IMay 29, 2012

Andrei Arshavin
Andrei ArshavinEpsilon/Getty Images

Alexander Mostovoi, who used to be a midfielder for the Russian National Football team, said that his country can survive Euro 2012 without Andrei Arshavin. Mostovoi made his declarations in an interview published by RIA Novosti on May 28, 2012.

Mostovoi based his comments on his experience as a midfielder for Russia between the years 1992 to 2004. Mostovoi said that Russia was too reliant on individuals during his era than in the present time.

He went as far to say that Russia can survive Euro 2012 without relying on any individual. Mostovoi hypothesized removing Arshavin and Roman Shirokov from the Russian National Football Team.

Roman Shirokov is one of the midfielders in the Russian squad for Euro 2012. The ideas brought forth by Mostovoi in his interview are part of the reality that exists in Russia.

In other words, no club can depend on one or various individuals for a long time. Eventually, Andrei Arshavin will eventually have to retire from Zenit St Petersburg and Russia.

Russia has other forwards in the official squad according to the UEFA Euro 2012 webpage. The forwards are Aleksandr Kokorin, Aleksandr Kerzhakov, Pavel Pogrebnyak, and Roman Pavlyuchenko.

While Russia has players that were present in Euro 2008, there is a new generation of players that are emerging in the shadows even though they are not forwards. The new generations include Kiril Nababkin, Vladimir Granat, Marat Izmailov, and Alan Dzagoev.

It is this generation that was born in the late 1980s and early 1990s that may take Russia towards the next step in Euro 2012 and beyond. They may even participate in the 2018 FIFA World Cup to be held in Russia.

The reality that exists in Russian and World Football is that every team has their era for a specific player. When a player reaches his or her mid 30´s or 40´s, the reflexes are not the same as when they were in their 20´s.

The players either retire or are gradually replaced by a newer generation in clubs. The purpose is continuity and more activity in the pitch.

Mostovoi is not only making a statement concerning Russian Football and Arshavin, he is referring to the realities of the sports world. It would be interesting to see this transition as it takes place in Russia.