Russia held by Qatar to 1-1 in friendly

Russia’s poor season was extended by Qatar in a 1-1 draw on

Tuesday in a friendly celebrating the future World Cup hosts.

Former Ghana boss Milovan Rajevac had more to cheer in his first

outing as Qatar coach, as his side opened the scoring before 9,500

at Al Sadd Stadium.

Russia lost its two previous friendlies against Belgium and Iran

and looked on course to losing a third straight.

After being held goalless by Armenia last weekend in Euro 2012

qualifying, Russia was down a goal after only four minutes in Doha

thanks to Mohamed Kasoula.

Qatar skipper Sebastian Soria had a chance to double the lead

moments later but missed an easy shot.

Russia equalized in the 33rd when captain Andrey Arshavin surged

from midfield and set up Roman Pavlyuchenko to tap in his side’s

first goal in four matches and 385 minutes.

The last time Russia scored was Alexander Kerzhakov’s

eighth-minute winner in a Euro 2012 qualifier at Macedonia on Oct.

12.

After an entertaining first half in Doha, both sides

surprisingly slipped into a defensive rut. Russia coach Dirk

Advocaat preferred to change more than half of his team but to no

avail.