Moscow – Hosts Russia will give it 200 per cent, and a prayer, in order to beat mighty Spain for a place in the World Cup quarter-finals, forward Denis Cheryshev said on Saturday.
The 2010 champions Spain have never won a match against a host nation at a World Cup or European Championship. Cheryshev hopes that trend continues on Sunday at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium in the last 16, and said his team doesn't feel extra pressure.
"We have to give 200 per cent, that's our responsibility. The team is relaxed and very much ready to do a good job," Cheryshev said, adding that "I usually pray ahead of games."
Cheryshev, who scored three times in the group stage, said that scoring against Spain, where he plays club football at Villarreal, would be no extra satisfaction because all that counts is the team effort and winning.
"I am sure we are going to have a hard time. They are excellent and can play very well but we also have our assets. We can win against anybody. That's what we have to think," he said.
Coach Stanislav Cherchesov said "we have not lost confidence" after a 3-0 defeat in the last group game against Uruguay and expressed hope that "tomorrow we can prove our worth and win".dpa