"To be fair, Robinson is not the best goalkeeper in England's history.
"After that blunder against Germany it could still be hard for him psychologically against our players."
And Smertin - the only Russian playing in the Premier League - cranked up the pressure on McClaren by insisting that England have made no progress under him.
He said: "England have not improved since the World Cup, and the fact they have already dropped many points in qualifiers speaks volumes.
"They were not impressive against Germany, so I think this is a good time for Russia.