- The 30-year-old Spartak Moscow captain has won the first title of his career
- Glushakov is hoping to continue his successful season at the Confederations Cup
- The midfielder wants Russia "to play from the soul, from the heart"
The season just gone will long be remembered by Spartak Moscow fans as they watched their beloved club win the Russian Premier League after a 16-year wait. There were many factors behind the long-overdue triumph - not least the inspirational performances of Red-Whites captain Denis Glushakov.
The midfielder showed unparalleled leadership and made a vital contribution in front of goal, with each of his eight strikes during the campaign proving decisive. It is no surprise that Glushakov was voted Footballer of the Year in Russia.
"I’ve won the league in my first time finishing in the top three," said the Spartak captain in an interview, unable to keep from smiling. "I’ve never celebrated like we did the night after clinching the title! When the team gathered at the stadium, I jumped for joy on someone’s car and dented the roof slightly."
However, the time for celebrations is over this week as the Russian national team begin their training camp ahead of the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. "I’d like this fantastic season to get even better," said a hopeful Glushakov.
A special game against Portugal
Glushakov believes that it will be considered a success if Russia make it to the semi-final at the Tournament of Champions. "If we finish in the top two of the group, it will give our self-belief a boost," said the 30-year-old Spartak man, "but the main thing is putting in decent performances and playing from the soul, from the heart. In that case, the supporters will back the team even if the result is poor and will say, 'These guys gave it their all out there'."
Russia’s biggest test of the summer will take place on 21 June when they play European champions Portugal, and Glushakov is clearly excited the game is being held at Spartak Stadium.
"It will be a special match for me," he revealed. "It would be just great if I managed to score against Portugal at my home stadium."
The match against Portugal is already causing quite a buzz in Russia. "That’s understandable because a lot of people want to see Cristiano Ronaldo in the flesh," Glushakov concluded. "It’d be nice if there were sell-outs for the games against New Zealand and Mexico too. After all, this is the first Confederations Cup to be held in our country and it’s an emotional moment. It’s very important for us we get the support from the stands."