Holland coach Marco van Basten paid tribute to Russia after they knocked his side out of Euro 2008.
The Dutch lost 3-1 and Van Basten, who now stands down as coach, admitted: “The Russians played a lot better than we did and deserved their victory.
“I can live with the indisputable fact that they were better than us.
“We delivered some remarkable performances in the first round, but today we could not repeat those.”
Netherlands were run outplayed by Russia, with playmaker Andrei Arshavin delivering man-of-the-match performance.
Van Basten accepted that his side were simply outplayed by Arshavin and striker Roman Pavlyuchenko.
“We had a lot of problems with the attackers Pavlyuchenko and Arshavin throughout the game,” added Van Basten.
“That really is the reason we couldn’t come into the game.”
The game also marked the end of goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar’s international career, with the Manchester United stopper retiring from international football.
The 37-year-old, who made his international debut under current Russian coach, Guss Hiddink, is Holland’s record appearance holder with 128.
“We were not good enough to beat this Russian side,”conceded a gracious Van der Sar.
“One has to admit it, they played fantastically well. It is really a pity to leave the tournament in this way after having started so brilliantly.
“Now, we have to confront the future. But it will be without me. This evening, one shouldn’t criticise anybody, it isn’t the time to point fingers at anybody.”