Sochi: Russia defender Mario Fernandes on Friday said the upcoming 2018 FIFA World Cup quarterfinal game against Croatia would be difficult yet interesting, comparing the Balkan team to Spain's.
In its last-16 match earlier this month, Russia sent Spain home when they won 4-3 in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw, reports Efe.
"Croatia has the same level of quality as the Spaniards but both teams play differently. It is a great team with high-level players in every position," he said, adding: "We have been training hard for a long time, which is why I think we deserve where we are at."
The defender, who started in three of his team's four games since the beginning of the tournament, said he would watch Brazil's match against Belgium on television.
Russia is set to take on Croatia at Fisht Stadium on Saturday.