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Ian's blog

From Russia Mit Low...and other coaches (Thursday 28th June)

I may have to come up with a new title for this blog, as I am most definitely not 'Mit Low' anymore at this World Cup.

Hard to believe that Jogi and the boys would be jetting home before me, but there it is - for the 3rd such tournament in a row, the holders have exited stage left without troubling the knockout stages. Italy, Spain and now Germany...perhaps Die Mannschaft had nothing left in the tank after a hectic domestic season with a desperately intense and close run title challenge combined with no winter break to recharge the...oh, wait...

From Russia Mit Low...and other coaches (Saturday 23rd June)

As I type this, I have a very different view from my Sochi hotel window than I did when our crew were first here for Portugal v Spain a week or so ago. It's a good deal grimmer outside as opposed to the scorching sunshine that greeted us on our previous trip to the Black Sea. There appears to be the threat of rain and/or thunderstorms all day, but a weather forecast for Sochi has to cover a huge surface area, so it remains to be seen if threatening clouds pervade over the Fisht Stadium a mile or so away from my vantage point - not that I can actually see it from my room this time.

From Russia Mit Low...and other coaches (Monday 19th June)

I'm back in Moscow for a day of prep and, more importantly, washing, after our team's 4 day trip to Sochi & Rostov - we rounded off that particular excursion with the Brazil/Switzerland game at the Rostov Arena. It's a mightily impressive looking construction right on the banks of the River Don that cuts a huge swathe through the centre of the city. The old port city itself is nowhere near as modern as the stadium, and it does look a little at odds with its surroundings as a consequence, but it's something for fans of FC Rostov to be undoubtedly proud of.

From Russia Mit Low...and other coaches (Sunday 17th June)

It's Sunday morning and I'm deep in the heart of a more 'traditional' part of Russia than the cosmopolitan capital city that I left behind 4 days ago. But before we got here to Rostov-on-Don, our team had first flown further south to Sochi by the Black Sea, and enjoyed 2 glorious days of unbroken sunshine and scorching temperatures...followed by the greatest football match I've ever had the privilege of commentating on.


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