MOSCOW (AP) — Russia fired coach Stanislav Cherchesov on Thursday, two weeks after the national team was eliminated from the group stage of the European Championship.

Russian soccer federation president Alexander Dyukov said the decision to end Cherchesov’s five-year tenure was reached after discussions with him.

“Together with Stanislav Salamovich (Cherchesov) we took the decision to end his contract,” Dyukov said in a statement. “The Russian soccer federation will begin the search for candidates for the post of head coach to prepare the team for qualifying games for the World Cup in 2022.”

Russia resumes World Cup qualifying at home against Croatia on Sept. 1.

“Five years working as the head coach of the national team will remain unforgettable in my life,” Cherchesov told the Moskovsky Komsomolets newspaper. “I’d like to thank all of the players who worked together with me for these years.”

Cherchesov took charge of the team after another group-stage exit under Leonid Slutsky at Euro 2016. He led Russia to the quarterfinals at home in the 2018 World Cup. The team lost to eventual runner-up Croatia on penalties.

Advertising

A run of disappointing results in the Nations League last year, including a 5-0 loss to Serbia, put Cherchesov under pressure even before Russia finished last in its Euro 2020 group with a win over Finland and losses to Belgium and Denmark.

Cherchesov is the third of the 24 coaches at Euro 2020 to leave his post. Netherlands coach Frank de Boer resigned following the loss to the Czech Republic in the round of 16, saying it was “not a healthy situation” because of the pressure on him. Germany coach Joachim Löw departed as planned following the team’s elimination. He will be replaced by Hansi Flick.

___

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports