Russia captain Andrei Arshavin has come under fire in his native country for blasting the fans for having unrealistic expectations in a firestorm which may end his chances of a permanent move to Zenit St. Petersburg. Following an opening 4-1 win over the Czech Republic at Euro 2012, hopes were high in the 2018 World Cup hosts that Russia could advance to the quarter-finals. But it all went wrong for Dick Advocaat’s side after a 1-1 draw with Poland and then a final group match defeat (1-0) to Greece, meaning they were exiting the tournament. Feelings in Russia have been running high over the country’s early exit and MP Anton Beliakov said that the players had “not met the expectations of millions of fans” , and should have apologised. Ashavin replied ” Whose expectations? Yours or ours? “If we have not fulfilled your expectations, then frankly that’s your problem.” The midfielder was also filmed slumped in a chair and telling supporters “We apologise, but for what?” Reactions from Russia flooded in and a firestorm has started around the player, with the most damaging response coming from the deputy chairman of Gazprom, the company which owns Zenit St. Petersburg; Arshavin has been on loan at his former club from Arsenal and there was speculation he could make the stay a permanent one. “How can a Russian citizen insult the honour of his country like this?” , said Valery Golubev, Gazprom’s deputy chairman. Vyacheslav Koloskov, the honourary president of the Russian Football Federation, also waded into the row, saying he believes that “a player like him does not deserve to be in the team.” Meanwhile, sports minister Vitaly Mutko also had his say, warning Arshavin that “those on the pitch must keep in mind they play for the entire country.” The row threatens to scupper any hope of Zenit St. Petersburg pushing ahead to sign Arshavin on a permanent basis from Arsenal for next season.