New Russia coach looks to veterans to save Euro 2016 bid

MOSCOW (AP) New Russia coach Leonid Slutsky is putting his trust in veteran players as he tries to save his team's hopes of reaching next year's European championship.

Slutsky took over as coach of the 2018 World Cup host on Aug. 7 on a short-term deal after poor results under his predecessor Fabio Capello left Russia in danger of failing to reach Euro 2016.

His first Russia squad focuses on veterans, with no players younger than 24 and seven over the age of 30, a profound change after Capello had tried to bring in youngsters ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

The only two debutants are midfielder Alexander Erokhin, 25, and fullback Oleg Kuzmin, who is 34.

Russia hosts Sweden on Sept. 5 in a crunch qualifier before visiting Liechtenstein three days later.