Hosts have a great record at major football tournaments and that is why bookmakers will err on the side of caution with their Russia World Cup 2018 odds.
Six previous champions have prevailed on home turf but, despite that significant advantage, Russia will need to improve on their exploits in Brazil four years ago.
On that occasion, they suffered an early exit after losing to Belgium in between draws with South Korea and Algeria.
There was another moderate showing at Euro 2016, when Russia started out with a draw against England but were then beaten by Slovakia and Wales.
Cherchesov will take some heart from his side’s performances at last year’s Confederations Cup, with a 2-0 win over New Zealand followed by narrow defeats against Portugal and Mexico.
A series of high-profile friendlies have produced mixed results, with a 3-3 draw versus Spain being the best result, while Argentina only snatched a 1-0 win in the 88th minute.
However, March’s double-header was less encouraging, with Russia going down 3-0 to Brazil in Moscow and 3-1 to France in St Petersburg.
Home advantage may still tempt some to be positive with their Russia World Cup 2018 betting tips and predictions, but it will take a leap of faith to follow this team.
Odds correct on date of publication: 21/05/2018
Fyodor Smolov has proven he can compete in elite company, bagging a brace in the draw with Spain and scoring against France.
The 28-year-old was also the most prolific Russian marksman in his country’s domestic top flight this term, with a tally of 14 goals only eclipsed by Dutchman Quincy Promes.
Aleksandr Kokorin reached double figures for Zenit St Petersburg in that competition and struck six more times in the Europa League, but a knee injury has sidelined him.
An experienced midfield department features several creative playmakers in Yuri Zhirkov, Alan Dzagoev and Aleksandr Samedov.
In defence, Zenit full-back Igor Smolnikov is a typically athletic performer, while goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev has over a century of international caps.
Rank (world): 66
WC appearances: 10
Best effort: Semi-finals in 1966 (as Soviet Union)
Road to Russia
RUS 1-3 France
RUS 0-3 Brazil
RUS 3-3 Spain
RUS 0-1 Argentina
RUS 1-1 Iran
RUS 4-2 South Korea
Mexico 2-1 RUS
RUS 0-1 Portugal
Igor Akinfeev (GK)
Igor Smolnikov (D)
Yuri Zhirkov (M)
Alan Dzagoev (M)
Aleksandr Samedov (M)
Fyodor Smolov (F)
Stanislav Cherchesov – RUS